Failing — To Win

What a concept! It’s one I subconsciously have subscribed to, and it took a friend pointing out the value of learning from failures that helped me realize the benefit of making that concept a conscious one. Do you seek and embrace failure on your path to learning and winning, or do you shy away from failure? Do you go so far as to avoid starting things you fear you’ll fail at doing right the first time?

I know people who won’t even try to learn or do something new because they fear the failure that goes along with trying new things. It’s a good thing they didn’t have that attitude when they were infants and kids. They wouldn’t have learned to walk or talk if they had. Think of all the things they failed at repeatedly until they won and succeeded!

Then there are people who seek new opportunities and embrace the struggle they’ll encounter until they learn the new skill or attitude. Those people impress me tremendously. The confidence, the courage, the knowledge…the wisdom!

The difference between a Master and a Beginner: the Master has failed more times than the Beginner has tried.

What I love about this concept is that there are so many areas in life we can apply trying, despite the probability of failing, knowing that we’ll succeed — sooner or later. Our lives are so much richer when we expand our horizons and push our envelopes.

I still chuckle at a memory I have of my trip through France with my sister when she was in college. I was taking pictures of pipes in a shop window during siesta when I saw feet moving through the lens of my camera (yes, it was long enough ago I used a 35mm film camera) I realized the shopkeeper hadn’t taken siesta and the shop was open, so I went in.

I pulled out my very best French and chatted away with the man. My sister, wondering where I was and what was keeping me, came into the shop as I was having an earnest conversation with the vendor. She was horrified at my substandard attempts. I was thrilled at the adventure I’d had. I failed to win.

I still have the wooden items I bought that day.

And I rely on that win to fuel other learning opportunities where I may not be good initially, but have fun along the way and end up having stories to tell. What more could you want as you fail your way to great wins?

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