Failure sucks, but it has a silver lining...perhaps even a gold one?
They say that failure teaches you the best lessons. What they don’t tell you is that in failure usually will be quite painful as you have to come to grips that you aren’t’ all that smart, perfect, or wonderful. You are simply a human being that tried something that didn’t work.
Maybe because I was born in the USA, I came from a place where a winner take all mentality was taught. You hear all the great motivational quotes like “winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing.” Most of my life I was pushed, or pushed myself to become better at something – to excel at it, not just be good.
I never understood that flight of Icarus as a mythological story of a father and his son who make some wings to fly, the father cautions his son, “don’t go too high, the sun will melt the wax holding the feathers together.”
The story makes complete sense when you are flat on you back looking up at the clouds after falling several thousand feet.
Sometimes in life, you have to jump off a cliff. It is probably not the best advise to someone that just wants to live a normal happy life. But if you have a new idea or invention and you don’t have the backing or the team to absorb failure, you do have to go up and decide, “Do I try? Or walk away, work another 20 years to save up enough…”
The first step never is comfortable. If anyone says, “oh I love taking that first step!” and doesn’t consider what can go wrong beforehand – they probably are insane
In your planning, you go over the numbers and plans that are usually overly optimistic and figure you can build something for far less than is reality, but since n one has build the “new” thing, you are really a bit at a loss with a known entity. That is why I always did like scaling businesses.
The problem with failing is that it simply hurts to fail. You piss people off, you find yourself eating hot dogs for years and pretending they are prime rib, you walk around and hear the whispers and rumors, you fight to put a smile on your face. IT is great to win, but if you loose, you are akin to some person with a disease that everyone runs away from so they don’t come in contact with the failure disease.
The interesting thing about failure is that it does more to teach you about yourself, deep inside the heart. Of course, to learn this, you have to stop going forth with your strengths, and sit and take the time to learn about your weaknesses (yes, that is indeed humbling to learn about your weaknesses, and then realize “holy shit, I have that many?”
Once again, during this time, more people disappear from your life, the few real friends stay, sometimes your best friend will walk away - most will chime in with the gossip stream about “poor bastard” news that western society thrives on. Who knew gossip tabloids are the world’s largest selling single newspaper?
I think the higher you tried to fly, the harder the fall will be.
In hindsight, I think the higher you try on earth and the more you fail, you also get a greater appreciation for god and how an entity simply loves you, no matter how battered and tattered you are. God doesn’t see, or is polite in trying to minimize, “damn, that was quite a crash!” or “do you know how badly you are hurt?”
I guess that is where you come to grips and start a relationship beyond the words in the books, or some religious leader spouting off words from a pulpit. It might start with some bizarre experience that can’t be explained, but god will use whatever attention level he needs, to get your attention.
Then you realize the greatest gift in failure, is you will find god.
Then you have someone to walk out the rest of the failure with the behaviors of fellow man on earth, which are at times not very pleasant.
But you realize you are never alone. In success, you have LOT's of people hanging on (funny, few of them actually try or do more than spectate) , in failure; you can always count on god to be there. He is your partner while you struggle to work you way out of the ICU from the fall and the crater hole so deep that you created on impact.
Just an odd missive as I tend to thing for tomorrow, not the past, and try to live in today.