Dear Ag: Here’s Your Pep Talk from Bear Grylls

Failure, fear, fire and faith are the cornerstones to success, Grylls says at 2019 Alltech One conference. ( Portia Stewart )

He’s the man who broke his back in three places. He had a parachute fail. He was eliminated during his first British Special Forces selection process. These are probably not the first things you think of when you hear the name Bear Grylls.

He’s most commonly known as the intrepid outdoorsman and host of “Man vs. Wild.” You may have watched just to see what he’d eat (and the list is long—everything from ticks and raw snake to yak blood and beetle larva). He also climbed Mt. Everest in a year when four other climbers died, two from exposure and two in a fall.

But it’s his failures, Gylls says, that got him where he is today. And Grylls has this message for people in agriculture: Never give up.

“Big moments in life leave marks,” Grylls says. “If there’s one message I want you to take away today, know the power of unwavering, unrelenting resilience.”

This message is the reason Alltech CEO Dr. Mark Lyons chose Grylls as a keynote at the 2019 Alltech One conference. In an arena filled with more than 3,000 ag professionals, Grylls shared the four pillars we can all use to achieve success.

1. Remember that failures outweigh successes. Grylls says he’s failed far more than he’s succeeded. “Failure is a doorway. We’ve got to go through it to succeed.”

2. Face your fear. The only way to face fear is to go through it. About 18 months before he would summit Mt. Everest, Grylls shattered his back in three places, when his parachute failed to open. Does he still skydive? Heck, yeah. And he faces his fear each time. “Embrace the challenge,” he says.

3. Use your inner fire to keep moving forward. The light will always win, he says, as long as you never give up.

4. Have faith. Have faith in yourself, in others, and in goodness. “The weapons that serve me best are from within—failure, fear, fire and faith.”

Once you have these pillars, use humility and kindness to complete your journey. “Our real wealth is in our relationships,” he says.

Lyons presented Grylls the Alltech Humanitarian Award for sharing his adventurous spirit with the world.

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