Free Republic
Browse · Search
Bloggers & Personal
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

7 Ways Wildly Successful People Screw Up Their Lives
PJ Lifestyle ^ | March 30, 2012 | John Hawkins

Posted on 03/31/2012 1:28:16 PM PDT by Kaslin

Success is a journey not a destination. — Anonymous

Many of us act as if success is a permanent state that we’re working to reach. We think, “One day, I’m finally going to be ‘successful’ and then I’ll have it made from there on out.” Unfortunately, life doesn’t work that way. You’re never going to get to the point where you can just kick back, put your life on cruise control, and enjoy “success.” When you get a chance to meet successful people, you find this out. Some of them are falling apart. Some are absolutely miserable. That’s no surprise. It’s tougher, in some respects, to be a success than a failure because you have something to lose and everything can fall apart. Here are some examples of how that can happen.

7) Mike Tyson: Spend Money Frivolously.

There are a lot of negative things you can say about Mike Tyson — so many in fact that you could dispute whether he was ever a “success” in the first place. Still, he became one of the best boxers who ever lived, a world-famous, heavyweight champ who earned $400 million. That sounds like such an enormous amount of money that you almost couldn’t spend it if you tried, but Tyson rose to the challenge. He acquired Siberian tigers, paid 6 figures for jewelry, bought multiple mansions, found a way to spend hundreds of thousands on cell phones and pagers, and spent almost half a million on a birthday party. Next thing you know, a man who made what most folks would consider an inexhaustible supply of money was bankrupt.

This can happen to people more easily than they realize because lifestyle tends to expand to fit income — and sometimes a little beyond. Next thing you know, they catch a bad break or have a drop and they find that they can’t roll their fixed expenses back enough to get in the black. Suddenly they’re in debt, getting further behind each month, and heading towards disaster. It happened with Tyson and it happens with a lot of others.

6) Jim Bakker: Break the Law.

A wildly successful televangelist, Jim Bakker’s ministry earned a devoted audience and he accumulated a surprisingly large fortune for a preacher. Over time, Bakker’s show managed to reach 12 million people a week and he even built Heritage USA, one of the most successful theme parks in America. However, Bakker’s success didn’t last. He had sex outside of marriage with Jessica Hahn and may have even drugged and raped her, depending on whom you believe. He also kept two sets of books and eventually served time in prison for mail and wire fraud.

The truth is that you can sometimes get away with doing the wrong thing. You can cheat on your wife, embezzle money, take drugs, drink yourself to sleep every night, etc., etc. People do it all the time. This leads people to believe that if they get away with it once, they always will. That’s often not so and when the things people do in the dark emerge into the light it can shatter their lives. Even before that, they have to live with the gnawing worry that someone will find out what they’re doing. Wouldn’t it be better to just do the right thing in the first place?YouTube Preview Image

5) Walt Disney: Don’t Mind Your Health.

Who hasn’t heard of Walt Disney? What an American icon. He was behind Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy, Pluto, Dumbo, the Three Little Pigs, Cinderella, and Disneyland! He was married, had children, was rich and famous, and did what he loved for living. It just doesn’t get much better than that. But Walt Disney also lived as a chain smoker his entire life, and lung cancer killed him at 65.

If everything else in your life is wonderful but you don’t have your health what good is it? Moreover, dying at 65 may not seem so bad at 20, but it’ll look a lot different at 64. Your body is a magnificent, resilient tool, but if you don’t take care of it, you’ll pay the price. Maybe you’ll die earlier or maybe you’ll just live in pain. Either way, you only have one body and if you don’t take care of it, you won’t get another one.

4) Huma Abedin: Marry Poorly.

Have you ever seen Huma Abedin? She looks like an exotic model — but, she’s not just an attractive woman. She’s a deputy chief of staff and trusted aide to Hillary Clinton. Not too shabby, right? Well, then she upped the ante even further by marrying an attractive, up-and-coming congressman with a reputation as a lady killer. How much better does it get than that? Unfortunately for Huma, she married Anthony Weiner, a man who apparently showed his Weiner to every woman he could find on Twitter even though he and Huma had been married for less than a year. When the scandal broke, Weiner turned into a national joke, resigned from Congress, and to top it all off, Huma was pregnant. So far, they’re still together, but you have to feel pity for any woman who has to endure that kind of national humiliation at the beginning of her marriage.

Marrying the wrong person is a mistake from which many people never recover. It can turn a happy life into turmoil, wreck finances, and make people lose trust in other human beings.

3) Nikola Tesla: Give Up.

One of the most brilliant minds ever to walk the earth, innovative scientist Nikola Tesla rubbed shoulders with other greats like Edison, Einstein, and Marconi. He was a national hero in his home country, which is now part of Croatia. He invented AC power and fluorescent lighting and his ideas made modern radio possible. That may undersell his accomplishments since a number of talented scientists worked on similar things in his day and there were often disputes about who really deserved the credit for inventions. Tesla could have done so much more in his life, but eventually, after going into debt and becoming frustrated by his inability to get funding for a major project he wanted to work on, one of the greatest minds in human history gave up. He spent the last third of his life feeding pigeons, coming up with half-baked ideas that he never bothered to test in the lab, and issuing overwrought statements to the press that caused the public to think he was off-his-rocker. Tesla lived so devoted to science that he never married so he’d have more time for his work; yet he wasted a third of his life.

Some people fall into a rut and let life pass them by. It’s understandable how that can happen. After all, a person in motion tends to stay in motion, while a person at rest will tend to stay at rest (hat tip to Newton). But there is no standing in place in life. You’re either growing or rotting. Nobody can afford to just coast through life, and the people who do pay a terrible price for it.YouTube Preview Image

2) Howard Hughes: Withdraw into Mental Illness.

Famous, politically well-connected, and extraordinarily wealthy, Howard Hughes directed hit movies, built airplanes, and broke flight records. He married a gorgeous actress named Jean Peters, and seemed to live the life of dreams.

But physical injuries from an airplane crash ruined his health, he began to give in to mental illness, and eventually Hughes withdrew from the world and surrounded himself with “yes men” who did whatever he asked, no matter how weird. Over time Hughes, who was one of the most famous and important men in the country, grew so isolated that many people concluded he was terminally ill or even dead. To the contrary, Hughes declined further into mental illness, paranoia, and quirkiness. In time his wife, supposedly the only woman he ever loved, filed for divorce. She could only talk to him by phone for years. After Hughes died, one of the most admired men of the last century looked so unrecognizable that investigators needed fingerprints to identify him because his 6’4″ frame had withered down to 90 pounds and he had a shaggy beard along with grotesque, long fingernails.

After a bad marriage or a betrayal from a friend, it can be easy to lose faith in people and withdraw to keep from being hurt. Big mistake. You can listen to all the songs you want telling you that you’re a rock, but that doesn’t make it so. Human beings are social animals and we need connections with others for health and happiness.

1) Len Bias: Surrender to Drugs.

There are so many big names who could fit as examples here, but one of the most tragic has to be Len Bias. He was truly a great college basketball player and he became a first team All-American. When he went pro, he was picked second in the NBA draft by the world champion Boston Celtics. So he was going to begin his career playing beside people like Larry Bird and Kevin McHale on one of the greatest basketball teams in history. On top of the huge contract he was going to get from the Celtics, he reportedly signed a 3 million dollar shoe deal with Reebok. How much better does it get than that? He was a 22-year-old kid who was famous, in great shape, wealthy, and about to start playing the game he loved for the best team on Planet Earth. Two days later he was dead. Apparently, Bias decided to celebrate his wonderful fortune by getting high on cocaine; he overdosed and had a heart attack. Then it was game over for someone who had the world at his feet.

Not everybody who drinks becomes an alcoholic, not everyone who uses drugs becomes an addict, and certainly not everyone who takes cocaine dies from it. Still, there’s not a person reading this who hasn’t heard a dozen stories about how people have flapjacked their own lives with addictions. Of course, people always assume that it won’t happen to them. The scary thing about all those people who did destroy their lives with drugs or alcohol? They thought the exact same thing before they got started.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Society
KEYWORDS:

1 posted on 03/31/2012 1:28:19 PM PDT by Kaslin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

I find it interesting that no known photograph of Howard Hughes exists. The best we can come up with is a still from a Leonardo DiCaprio movie. ;)


2 posted on 03/31/2012 1:38:50 PM PDT by ClearCase_guy (Like Emmett Till, Trayvon Martin has become simply a stick with which to beat Whites.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

Booze and women should be in there too.


3 posted on 03/31/2012 1:41:21 PM PDT by driftdiver (I could eat it raw, but why do that when I have a fire.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: driftdiver

Booze & women........tied for first place.


4 posted on 03/31/2012 1:44:08 PM PDT by Tahoe3002
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: ClearCase_guy
He was a nice looking man:
5 posted on 03/31/2012 1:48:55 PM PDT by SuzyQue
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: AdmSmith; AnonymousConservative; Berosus; bigheadfred; Bockscar; ColdOne; Convert from ECUSA; ...

#zero — invest with Bernie Madoff / vote for Democrats.

Thanks Kaslin.


6 posted on 03/31/2012 1:50:20 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: ClearCase_guy; SuzyQue

;’)

http://www.google.com/search?q=howard+hughes&um=1&ie=UTF-8&hl=en&tbm=isch&source=og&sa=N&tab=wi


7 posted on 03/31/2012 1:52:38 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: driftdiver

Reminds me about the joke about the lottery winner. He goes to a friend and asks to borrow money. His friend asks, “You just won the lottery a year ago! What did you do with all the money?” “Well, I lost a lot of it gambling in Vegas, I spent a lot on loose women and booze. The rest of it I just wasted.”


8 posted on 03/31/2012 1:53:03 PM PDT by Vince Ferrer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

Tyson acutally did several of those things.


9 posted on 03/31/2012 1:54:30 PM PDT by Daveinyork
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

I saw an hour program on Tesla, I was really surprised just how brilliant he was.

I remember thinking he would have been better off if he had married a good woman who would look after him and sort of give him some guidance and support.

Of course there is the other kind of woman too.


10 posted on 03/31/2012 2:02:16 PM PDT by yarddog
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ClearCase_guy
I find it interesting that no known photograph of Howard Hughes exists.

Urban legend. When he was younger, he was in front of a camera every chance he could. A crazy Richard Branson of his era.

11 posted on 03/31/2012 2:06:39 PM PDT by mnehring
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv

Thanks, I couldn’t get my HTML right :(.


12 posted on 03/31/2012 2:07:12 PM PDT by SuzyQue
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
This can happen to people more easily than they realize because lifestyle tends to expand to fit income — and sometimes a little beyond. Next thing you know, they catch a bad break or have a drop and they find that they can’t roll their fixed expenses back enough to get in the black.

This makes it out like its is a surprise their income will go down. It is entirely predictable that an athlete's income will go down, because all of their high earning years are when they are young and healthy. In only a few years their career is over, their after sports career dowsn't pay them nearly what they are used to.

13 posted on 03/31/2012 2:14:40 PM PDT by Vince Ferrer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
This can happen to people more easily than they realize because lifestyle tends to expand to fit income — and sometimes a little beyond. Next thing you know, they catch a bad break or have a drop and they find that they can’t roll their fixed expenses back enough to get in the black.

This makes it out like its is a surprise their income will go down. It is entirely predictable that an athlete's income will go down, because all of their high earning years are when they are young and healthy. In only a few years their career is over, their after sports career doesn't pay them nearly what they are used to.

14 posted on 03/31/2012 2:15:33 PM PDT by Vince Ferrer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

These people screw up their lives because they are able to live without any restraints, or any humility, if I can put it that way.

These people had fame and fortune. They can think that they are smarter than everyone else, and superior to everyone else, to get to where they are. They are surrounded by yes men. They can literally do whatever they want, whenever they want. Money is no object. Their hangers-on and yes men will do whatever it takes to keep their bosses happy.

So, if they gete into drinking, or into women, or drugs, or gambling, or whatever else, there is nobody to tell them that they are going in the wrong direction. There is nobody to be a stablizing influence in their lives.


15 posted on 03/31/2012 2:20:54 PM PDT by Dilbert San Diego
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

Mike Tyson:

I had him on my airplane once - in first class. Him and an entourage of three gold-encrusted sleazeballs in $1,000 shoes and $2,000 suits. Mike had on the most gorgeous floor length fir coat I’ve ever seen, and was covered in gold and diamonds.

He was a real gentleman, though. As he passed me on the way out he said “Thank you for a safe ride, Captain.” and reached out and shook my hand.

Guess he coulda picked better “friends”, huh?


16 posted on 03/31/2012 2:28:43 PM PDT by QBFimi (When gunpowder speaks, beasts listen.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ClearCase_guy

17 posted on 03/31/2012 2:38:12 PM PDT by HerrBlucher (.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Vince Ferrer

Athletes know their income is going to go down eventually. What they usually fail on is realizing that eventually is a lot sooner than they think. Most athletes in pro-sports get 1 contract, their rookie contract, over half the players are out of the league by the time that one is done, and the highest earning years are in the second contract. And pro athletes don’t usually get to that level by assuming they’ll fail.


18 posted on 03/31/2012 2:38:12 PM PDT by discostu (I did it 35 minutes ago)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: QBFimi
Guess he coulda picked better “friends”, huh?

At some point those friends just pick themselves and attach to the wealthy ones. It takes an effort to say "No" - but you can do that then you can avoid many other problems as well.

19 posted on 03/31/2012 2:45:23 PM PDT by Greysard
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

About Jim Bakker (the first or the second ‘K’ added by himself), breaking the law was actually part and parcel of his “successful televangelism”.


20 posted on 03/31/2012 2:45:29 PM PDT by Revolting cat! (Let us prey!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

I vote for women and booze in that order, since it’s women who drive one to booze.


21 posted on 03/31/2012 2:48:18 PM PDT by Revolting cat! (Let us prey!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ClearCase_guy

Here’s a pile of ‘em:

http://www.google.com/search?client=opera&rls=en&q=howard+hughes+photo&sourceid=opera&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&channel=suggest


22 posted on 03/31/2012 2:56:16 PM PDT by carriage_hill (I'll "vote for an orange juice can", over Barry 0bummer and another 4yrs of his Regime From Hell!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: carriage_hill; SunkenCiv; HerrBlucher

Ooops; you beat me to it. Didn’t read the whole thread.


23 posted on 03/31/2012 2:58:31 PM PDT by carriage_hill (I'll "vote for an orange juice can", over Barry 0bummer and another 4yrs of his Regime From Hell!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: carriage_hill

Hey, being second or third is usually my job, dammit! ;’)


24 posted on 03/31/2012 3:18:04 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv

LOL. I’ll stand down until I’ve read the thread and made sure you post ahead of me. (;^O{)

Please add me to your wonderful Ping List, SunkenCiv. I’ve visited several of your posts and they’re v-e-r-y informative and interesting; I’d like to be part of it.


25 posted on 03/31/2012 3:48:20 PM PDT by carriage_hill (I'll "vote for an orange juice can", over Barry 0bummer and another 4yrs of his Regime From Hell!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
Marrying the wrong person is a mistake from which many people never recover. It can turn a happy life into turmoil, wreck finances, and make people lose trust in other human beings.

Truer words have never been spoken.

26 posted on 03/31/2012 3:58:53 PM PDT by sima_yi ( Reporting live from the People's Republic of Boulder)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
I agree with many of the observations (I can't disagree with factual events), but not so much with Category 6: "Howard Hughes: Withdraw into Mental Illness".
It makes it sounds like it was a choice. Sometimes it really isn't. I don't know about Howard Hughes, but sometimes a mental illness gets a hold of someone, without their inviting it in, and it won't let go.
I agree that mental illness can destroy a person's career and wreck their life, but it is not always a choice. Sin came into the world, and brought death and diseases. Some we can ward off (for awhile) by healthy life styles; others are just going to get you.
27 posted on 03/31/2012 4:10:59 PM PDT by El Cid (Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house...)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Dilbert San Diego

I think Elvis covered all the bases..they didn’t call him King for nothing ;)


28 posted on 03/31/2012 4:22:50 PM PDT by chasio649 (Stop looking for heroes.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: Revolting cat!
About Jim Bakker (the first or the second ‘K’ added by himself)...

If you look closely, you can tell its the second...

29 posted on 03/31/2012 4:50:17 PM PDT by Last Dakotan
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

Greed and unthankfulness. These two do in more successful people than I have ever known. They rob them of their happiness and lead them into unhealthy lives. I have said this before and I’ll say it again as fact. Money NEVER makes a man better. At best he can remain who he was before.


30 posted on 03/31/2012 8:42:16 PM PDT by strongbow
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Bloggers & Personal
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson