Today I reflect on the circumstance that a culture has come to pity defeat. To look down on defeat or “failure” like it is something to fear. That people, myself included, garner shame from the mere thought of attempting something. This shame comes from thoughts of judgement around the circumstance of failure. Failure being an outcome that achieves lesser than a pre-defined goal. The situations appraisal (the judgement) is fogged with loss, pity and ridicule. This should not be the way. For there is greatness in defeat.
Defeat is the apex of learning. When we fail we discover entirely new things about ourselves and the world around us. In my opinion, this is the purpose of life; to experience it and learn from it. So then why is shame and fear centered around experiencing failure? Why has it come to such a state that many are fearing to take action that may expose them to the circumstance of failure? If we express our regard to failure in such a way that does not encourage learning and progress but instead causes suffering and backlash, then we will abandon progress altogether. In fact, it is a failure that we approach failure this way because just as every failure is also a success, every success is also a failure.
It can always get worse. It can always get better. The glass is half empty, the glass is half full, or, the grass is greener on the other side, or, even still, you are not looking in the right place. One argument is as arbitrary as the next. If it depended on how we looked at things, then that would depend on how we looked at perception. There is no right or wrong there just is and you are experiencing it right now.
It is my belief that failure is the course to fulfillment. Fail brilliantly and you will have outlived yourself many times over.
When you fall you will learn that you suffer and when you heal you will learn that you live.
I am not sure if you yet know what I am trying to say. What I want us to do is to fail. To feel pain and suffer at times. I want that. That is life and I want us to live.
If you fall and it hurts it may make logical sense to not get back up again. After all if you got back up you would sooner or later fall again. To you in that situation it may make sense to stay immobilized. Yet if every day goes by and all you want to do is get back up again but don’t. If you still want to attempt that jump but you don’t because you shame yourself from your past failures harbored as excuses then you will stay in that hole. You might think you are safe but that is a false positive. You are putting yourself in danger.
There is no bottom to despair and no peak to pleasure and that is why change is scary. And in all this we can still find each other. That is a great mystery of life. In all the uniqueness we all have, of all the different circumstances of lives, beliefs, cultures and philosophies, we can still find each other in those endless divides.
Fear of failure immobilizes us. We can not be immobilized. You are here to complete a mission. You have a purpose. Mobilize. We need you.