12 December 2017
This sort of journey is especially the case when you’re born into a middle-class family. Rowan Atkinson had this and also a serious speaking disorder.
Despite his humble beginnings, Atkinson was admitted to Oxford University through sheer hard-work. It was there, where his passion for acting and comedy began to blossom.
He joined a campus comedy group but often performed poorly, mainly because of his speaking disorder.
He persevered however, and decided to give acting a shot. Unfortunately, it only resulted in him being rejected by a number of different television shows.
The reason: his persistent stammering. At this point it would be understandable for anyone in his situation to hang in the towel and pick up a normal trade, one that wouldn’t generate the disappointment and failure he had already experienced so much of.
Mr. Atkinson wouldn’t do this. As he tarried on, he realized that his stuttering stopped whenever he played a specific character. He stated and I quote: “I found that when I played a character other than myself, the stammering disappeared.”
Sadly, even in the midst of this breakthrough the rejection continued. Why this time? Simply because he did not have a “television face” or “heroic body.”
Did he give up? NOPE!
He started his own show called, Mr. Bean, which shot through the roof! It almost immediately became a global success.
In retrospect, those hardships contributed heavily to the success he has achieved thus far.
Today, he is one of the most recognized celebrities in the world with a net worth of over $100 million.
Aside the lesson not to let disappointments discourage us, the other lesson here is one we’ve heard time and time again – hard work is not defined by how you look physically, it is defined by how persistent, determined, and self-disciplined you are to make your dreams a reality.
Mr. Atkinson may not be a war hero or may have the usual “rags-to-riches” story. However, he’s still a perfect example of why you shouldn’t quit just because rejection has become all too common in your life. You never know how close you are to success unless you refuse to give up.
“To be successful you don’t need beautiful face and heroic body, what you need is skillful mind and ability to perform.”- Rowan Atkinson