Churchill said much about success in life and politics, but is frequently misquoted. His genuine quotations on the subject are less often seen. Here are some of the things that he actually said, confirmed in Churchill By Himself –in chronological order, with citations:
“You must put your head into the lion’s mouth if the performance is to be a success.” –19 February 1900, South Africa, London to Ladysmith via Pretoria, 1900.
“…do not be carried away by success into demanding more than is right or prudent.” —House of Commons, 3 March 1919
”Do not be fobbed off with mere personal success or acceptance. You will make all kinds of mistakes; but as long as you are generous and true, and also fierce, you cannot hurt the world or even seriously distress her. She was made to be wooed and won by youth. She has lived and thrived only by repeated subjugations.” –My Early Life, 1930
”…no boy or girl should ever be disheartened by lack or success in their youth but should diligently and faithfully continue to persevere and make up for lost time.” –Speech, University of Miami (Fla.), 26 February 1946
“Success always demands a greater effort.” –13 December 1940 to Australian Prime Minister Robert Menzies, Their Finest Hour, 1949
“…no one can guarantee success in war, but only deserve it.” —Their Finest Hour, 1949
AMONG THE THINGS CHURCHILL NEVER SAID:
• “Success is going from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.” (Broadly attributed to Churchill, but found nowhere in his canon. An almost equal number of sources credit this saying to Abraham Lincoln; but none of them provides any attribution.)
• “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” (No attribution found.)
—Excerpted from Churchill by Himself.