Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Failure

So often, when people write or talk about failure, it is only to focus on its opposite. Failure was the setup for the eventual triumph. Failure was where the lesson was learned; failure made the victory sweeter.

But that narrative, inspiring as it is at times, sets up a certain pressure and expectation even around failure. Now we have to try harder; now the success has to be even bigger to compensate for the setback. Now we have something to prove. Now we pursue, or await, the victory with even more anxiety.

In reality, failure isn't always followed by success. Sometimes that truth is very hard, tragic even. But sometimes it's just--life. It's okay not to win in the end. Imperfection is okay. The journey is worth taking anyway.

6 comments:

  1. This is so very, very true. I think for every 300 failures of mine, I get maybe 1 or 2 successes. It's just how it goes. I think it's best to take away from that any positive you can, especially the fact that you've grown, not what you're going to get at the end. Such good points. :)

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    1. Yes. There's something to having an experience for its own sake, not just for the supposed payoff.

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  2. I love how you put this. I agree with that thought that we now put pressure on making the redemption bigger and greater. Also, I've also noticed a tendency to make a setback an epic one so as to be considered a true failure.

    The journey is always worth it.

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  3. This is just beautiful. We should all kind of kneel before you (don't worry, we'll get up and move on -- but I do love this so very much.

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    1. Thank you, Jeannine--yeah, no need for kneeling. But I appreciate the kind words!

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