When’s the last time you’ve blown it big time?
Maybe you passed up a great job opportunity.
Or you screwed up with a client and they fired you.
Or you started a new business that lost more money than it made.
Or you divorced who you thought was your soul mate.
People tend to believe there’s something shameful in “failing.” They don’t talk about their screw-ups. They don’t think about them. Instead, the failure weighs them down like a huge boulder. Every time they go to do something different – get in a new relationship, start a new business or land another client – the failure boulder crushes their spirit.
“Are you crazy,” it says. “You remember what happened before. Why are you even THINKING about this?”
So, you contract. You pass on opportunities. Life gets smaller and more scary.
My response to that: Screw failure!
Here’s a secret: You know that person you admire? The person who has the “perfect life” with the “perfect income?”
They’ve messed up time and time again. They’ve just learned to deal with it.
I was brought up in a “failure is not an option” household. If I got solid “A’s” on my report card, my father wanted to know why I didn’t get A+’s. If I was #2, there was a huge discussion about why I wasn’t #1.
Maybe you got the same message.
I learned – gradually – to fail. Sometimes, I didn’t land the client I wanted. Sometimes, my relationships didn’t work out. Sometimes, my business took turns I didn’t want it to take.
Oddly enough, there was always an upside to failure. My next relationship was always better. I eventually landed a cool new client. And the weird business twists and turns always worked out.
Slowly, I realized that failure was an option.
That doesn’t mean I haven’t had the crap kicked out of me. I’ve gone through extreme business and personal failures that knocked me on my butt. I was depressed, scared and I isolated myself. For months.
Yet, now I can look back and say, “Thank goodness for that situation.” Because the failure taught me things. I learned I was strong. I was resilient. And I always land on my feet … even though it seems like it’s a long, long way down before I land.
If not for my various failures …
– I wouldn’t have met my wonderful husband.
– I wouldn’t be in the best shape of my life.
– I wouldn’t have the compassion I have for people going through various health and financial difficulties.
– I wouldn’t have created the exact kind of business that fits my personality and work habits.
– I would be facing various health problems as a result of my lifestyle.
Derek Cromwell had a great line in the LinkedIn SEO Copywriting group (and his note is the inspiration for this blog post.) He said:
I’ve grown to the point where when I see that fall coming I put my arms in the air and scream “weeeeeeeeeee!” on the way down.
I love this! What a visual!
So go ahead. Make mistakes. Screw up. Embrace your failures and learn from them. Put yourself out there. Live your dream. If you mess up – so what. We ALL mess up.
Just scream “weeeeeee!” on the way down. :) Just like Buddy the Corgi on the twisty slide:
Life is much sweeter when you take a few risks along the way. Why not go for it?