Tuesday, January 8, 2013

The Courage To Fail

“I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”
― Michael Jordan

Some of our most successful heroes are lauded for their accomplishments and held up on a pedestal.  We adore them and put them in that otherworldly category that comes with fame.  
We associate people like Michael Jordan with all-things-unattainable.  In our amazement we are certain we could never 'Be Like Mike.'  What sets them apart from us, however, is not that they are successful.  
What sets them apart from most of us is their willingness to fail.  
They have committed themselves to their goals so deeply, that setbacks and failures don't affect their behavior.  They never give up on what is important to them, even when things might not go their way.
So how can we find the courage to fail in our lives?
The first step is for each of us to actually have something we strive for.  Don't be so busy numbing yourself to life that you miss out on your own brilliance.  So many teens I have worked with over the years have gotten to that unfortunate place where nothing matters to them.  They have said to themselves, "It's all good," about life's disappointments so many times that they don't really care about anything anymore.  
Truly though, aren't we all just shoving our wants and desires down, covering them all up with that false bravado we think will protect us from disappointment?  So many of us are afraid to actually WANT something that we just don't try and then we miss out on our own potential to 'Be Like Mike.'  We just simply miss out.
How can you find the courage to fail?  Here is a basic recipe:
Step One: Find something you care about.  Find the thing you want to be good at or the thing you want to have...find your Why.
Step Two:  See yourself living a life having fulfilled your Why?  Feel it, Smell it, Taste your life as it would be once you have successfully achieved your desire.  
Step Three:  Do the work necessary to have what you want.  Put all your effort and ability into achieving your Why. Know that you deserve the success you are working toward.
Step Four:  Get back up when you stumble.  Allow yourself the mistakes that guide you forward toward your Why.  Know that true failure only happens when you give up on yourself.  Never give up on your Why.
Step Five:  When you have achieved your goals successfully, find a new Why and go back to Step One.

It is an infinite recipe...as we are never done in our pursuit of happiness.  We just keep finding new ways to define our Self and new things to strive for.  Just have fun in the journey and ignore the bumps and bruises you will get along the way!

Have the Courage to Fail and you will only know success!


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