The One Secret Everyone Needs to Know to Achieve Success
(A Short, Powerful Story)

By Motivational Speaker Brian Vaszily,
Author of the #1 International Bestseller, The 9 Intense Experiences,
Founder of

I love failing. No, that doesn’t mean the door is wide open and I am inviting it in. It means I accept it for what it is: a gift.

A gift there for my taking if I choose to accept it. A gift that, far more than any success I will ever experience, will help me grow, try and become who I already know I am. That will help me to be happy.

Michael Jordan said, “I have missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I have lost almost 300 games. On 26 occasions I have been entrusted to take the game winning shot... and missed. And I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

Now there’s someone who may make something of himself someday.

As you read the brief story and perspective below, think of these questions:

What are the various courts, the playing fields, that you are striving to achieve success on?

Which of them may be particularly frustrating to you because you’ve had “9000 misses” … or it feels like it?

Really think about that:

Are you trying to lose weight or improve your health?

Seeking to care for someone else who you love and want to help be happier?

Striving to achieve success in your career or finances?

Wanting to find deep satisfaction in your relationship, or seeking to find your true life partner?

Wanting to write a book, make more friends, or make it to the NBA?

Here’s a key reminder … something that every single person I have ever talked to or read from or about who has achieved peak success has noted in one way or another:

No matter what “courts” you are on, if you can see and feel the outcome – if you can see and feel yourself twenty pounds lighter, or an award-winning novelist, or debt-free – you HAVE already achieved the success. Now it is a matter of taking those shots, and learning from all those you miss, to become what you already are.


There are actually three key events in my life that led to the creation of the whole “Intense Experiences” concept ... and the creation of the Web's #1 personal growth newsletter, the "Live Deeper, Be Happy" newsletter.

One event happened long before 9/11, the other a couple years after, but one of them was the world- and consciousness-shifting event of September 11, 2001.

I experienced the events of that day the way most people did: watching the horrors unfold on my TV screen.

And in the minutes, hours, days, months and beyond September 11, 2001, my heart and mind went where so many people’s hearts and minds went: to WHAT REALLY MATTERS.

Because it was so clear that could have been me, or anyone I love, in those planes and buildings, I held my children tighter. Paid more attention to those I love.

I focused more on what I am meant to do with my life. Realized -- through those repeated images of bursting planes and burning towers and knowing there are people inside with loves and hopes and dreams – that life is so fragile, and the ONLY thing worth focusing on is what really matters.

For a time there, it was clear so many people went to this beautiful place. Neighbors were friendlier to neighbors. Mundane to-do’s that seemed so important before 9/11 didn’t seem so important anymore.

A beautiful silver lining from such a dark, dark cloud.

However, I also noticed closely as, over months into a couple years, that passion and mass commitment to what really matters faded. Like the smoke from the towers.

Not all but most people let the little nothings become big somethings once again. They gradually turned away from themselves, from what really matters, and back to “keeping up with the Jones” and Brittany Spears and being overwhelmed with relatively insignificant to-do’s and believing they were “stuck” in jobs, relationships, and situations they despised.

And yet death may still be but a blink away. People by and large hid from that fact once again.


And based on that it specifically came to me.

Intense experiences are what awakens people’s consciousness and spirits.

The lack of intense experiences – getting bogged down in the same-old same-old in life, investing your precious energy in things you can’t stand, watching most of the mind-numbing muck on TV, heading to the shopping mall yet again when there are six thousand other far more amazing things to do if people would only open their mind and heart to them – leads to stress, angst, depression, dissatisfaction, emptiness, distance from those we should be closest to, loneliness … and all of their consequential physical manifestations in our body in the form of illness and disease.

But I also realized we don’t need to have a 9/11 – or get cancer, or survive a natural disaster – in order to clear through the life-constraining muck inside us and stay focused on what really matters … our relationships, our health, our biggest goals, our dreams. On truly being happy.

Though it didn’t have the name yet, the Intense Experiences concept was born.

From the start, I knew it -- this website, the "Live Deeper, Be Happy" newsletter -- would be life-changing for anyone who immersed themselves in it. I knew it was a concept that literally could change the world.

If I could summarize my thoughts when I started, it might sound like this:

“If I research, create and provide people the most powerfully and positively transformative experiences -- things people actually WANT to do and enjoy doing -- they wouldn’t 'need' a 9/11 or surviving cancer or narrowly escaping death in order to recognize and stay focused on what REALLY matters in their life.”

And so, though it had been fermenting slowly in me even before 9/11, thereafter the whole “Intense Experiences” concept lived with me and grew in me in everything I did. And it still does.

With the free and unique "Live Deeper, Be Happy" personal growth newsletter from, transformation to who you know deep inside you really are is inevitable.

No need to take my word for it, though. Please check out the kind words the "Live Deeper, Be Happy" readers have shared!

So put another way, I have already succeeded.

Michael Jordan may have missed those 9000 shots, but he kept taking them because he already knew who he was, and the value he therefore could contribute to the team, to the game … and to people’s belief in themselves during the era he played.

And so it is here at not every article, inspirational video, or other piece you will discover may work or resonate with you ... I may fail sometimes ... but much of it will hit home with you. And I will keep shooting here, as this is my mission in life.

And so please consider your life.

Where are you failing?

What do you desire deeply – in your career, finances, relationships, health, etc. – that so far you haven’t “connected on,” to use more basketball lingo?

Congratulations to you, wherever it may be.

Because you are shooting. You are reading this, so that is proof enough!

Keep shooting.

You too have failed over and over, haven’t you? And because you can love that failing for what it is – a gift – that is why you too will achieve success.

Fear of failing is the only true failure. Fear of failing is the only way to block your success.

If you already have the goal in your heart, if you already can see yourself making that basket, you’ve already succeeded in the most important place.

Embrace your failures, understand them, grow from them, and move on to the next shot. You will become who you already are.