Learn from the success and failures of the successful

Let’s face it, I am related to some pretty interesting people even if it doesn’t help me personally at all and for many years it has been sort of this just cool thing to know. I started to get interested in it when I was trying to pay for college and realized if I joined the DAR I might get my tuition paid for. Once you start working on your family tree it gets addicting and then you know they have a special club for everything.

In fact, today I am supposed to be attending a family reunion at a fort in Texas my 4th Great Grandfather built and died at but folks it is 100 degrees out and there is no air conditioning. Call me high maintenance but that sounds a lot like hell on earth. I love my cousins, but we have more events that are much cooler. When I moved to Texas I got to see the impact that part of my family has made. Cities named after them, streets, and well lots of graveyards with the family name. Yep we all end up in the same place folks and I think we need to remember that, in fact as a family every year we meet at the first church ever planted in Texas by our grandparents and we look at all the dead relatives graves...its a wake up call and I think this is part of why they have seen a lot of success...they know we are here a short time. But even with that they have a special “First Families of Texas” club and certificate. If people can create a club they will, I just like the certificate on my wall to remember my ancestors giving their lives. If you want to see some of the story of my family in Texas read about it on Wikipedia.

So when I started to write my new book on success I suddenly got this idea of including some of these people in it and focusing on how they were successful and how their decisions have turned into many successes for others as well. I want to take each family member and one lesson from each that we can all learn from. I mean why not them instead of just all the others most people might focus on?

A few of my relatives I want to talk about today are very very distant. Not close like those I mentioned above. And that would be the Royal Family of England. My 19th Great Grandfather is Robert III King of England, 20th Great Grandfather is Robert King of Scots and 22nd Great Grandfather is King Henry III Plantagenet. So you can see they are way way back. So this basically makes Prince Charles my 19th cousin. I can’t exactly walk up and knock on their door, but if blood means anything maybe one day I can see them in the distance. Haha This is all on my mother’s side of the family. On my dad’s I have cousins only like Charles II King of England, Scotland and Ireland, who is my 1st cousin 10x removed and various other Kings in that line. Then we have King Henry IV Debourbon a 10th great grandfather. For the purpose of figuring out who I am talking about you can visit this page . If you get down to the middle of the page to George II Hanover 1683-1760, I get into cousins and he is my 10th cousin.

Friends you would think I could somehow bank on the fact I am related to Kings, but not so much. I mean just give me a room in a castle. Haha I have never even visited the UK but if I do, I will act like the crazy unimportant relative all up in photo land. As it turns out you have to be born in the line that inherits everything and if you aren’t then you are just a regular nonrelative. Unless of course I wanted to marry into a Royal Family I would have some DNA to possibly help justify it. For example, I am related to some of the same people Princess Diana was, yet she was still considered “being outside of the family”. So unless I run into a prince I doubt it will help me much. I have the same grandparents in some cases as Queen Elizabeth but does nothing for me. Dang it! People used to get Queen Elizabeth and my grandmother mixed up often, but that is as close as we come folks.

But one thing is for sure is we rarely discuss Kings in this day an age and what we could possibly learn from their lives. I mean who does that besides watching a movie or documentary. So I thought I would take a cut at it. Afterall, aren’t we all Kings in some sense, especially if you are building an empire of your own? From amazing things to outright horrible things they did, we can learn from them all.

So let’s zone in on my 19th Great Grandfather Robert II King of England  He was 53 when he finally became King. Talk about having to have patience to fulfill your life’s purpose and calling! On top of that when he finally reached that title he didn’t have any authority to rule or reign. And then he only lived for 16 more years. This goes to show you if you think that your life is only for ONE purpose you could wait around forever for that one momentous moment and miss on what life is all about. It is full of multiple purposes! In fact, he basically ran away to live in a remote castle with a title and no power, and died shortly after his son was captured by King Henry IV for trying to escape to France. James was then in prison by King Henry for 18 years.

Yes so my 18th Great Grandfather imprisoned my 19th Great Uncle. Talk about family feuds! Imagine having that in your family closet? Oh yeah we just put each other in prison for 18 years that’s all. But don’t worry as it happens, you live 18 years in prison, read a ton of books and become King when you get out. And that is exactly what he did.

This is proof that no matter how bad it looks we can always land on top. I mean when he was released he still had to pay money for it and someone had to be traded for him to be free. It wasn’t easy. But yet he then went on to have authority that his father never had. His end was that he was murdered, which is the high price of being in such a powerful position. Think of that next time you really think you want to be popular...it all comes with a price and generally others wanting to take you out.

So in summary, what can you and I both learn from just these few stories?

  • Live life now, don’t wait to achieve the “title” or position you may have. Don’t wait to be rich, don’t wait to accomplish anything to live and enjoy your life now.
  • Life is full of purposes and different seasons. Utilize them all because you never really know how it will all turn out in the end.
  • Don’t try to run from responsibility because the consequences are never worth it
  • Reading can turn you into King material and win you favor with others (never underestimate the power of books and art)
  • Power can be over valued by those that don’t have it and the price to pay is huge, consider this before you go after it
  • We all have family fights and arguments, no family is perfect some just tend to look far more extreme than others from the outside.
  • If you are going to fight for anything in life, make sure it is worth giving up your life for because in the end no matter how you die you essentially are giving your life for something, even in this very moment.
  • Also when you are related to cool people you still have to create your own cool...working on it! :)


So I hope this was a fun blog for you! I know that for me these stories are very entertaining. And the really cool thing is that we can all learn and grow by the lives of those that have gone before us. Now, go after your dreams and make sure they are worth everything you are giving!


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