I hope that you are having a fulfilling week. Right now I’m cuddled up in my coziest blanket, next to a fire, watching the snow fall outside my window. I love the snow. Yesterday we made a crazy huge snow fort with our neighbors (I would call it an igloo – but I think that would be insulting to Eskimos). It was so much fun.
Besides all the snow adventures, this week has been interesting for me because I have been asked by three different people to participate in their books or programs by sharing entrepreneurial mistakes I’ve made and how I’ve overcome them. It’s an honor to be asked to participate, of course, and it’s been good for me on a deep level to reflect on my past failures and what I did about them.
It’s been difficult to choose which mistakes to share with them – there have been so many! Learning the hard way has kinda always been my thing.
I’m willing to fail, but I’m not planning on it. – Tweet It
When you’re willing to either succeed or fail, and you work in the direction of your dreams, you become unattached to succeeding. You don’t have that NEEDY energy with regard to success. To don’t squelch the FLOW that would take you there. And meanwhile, you relinquish the resistance to failing. You stop being intolerance of failing and therefore take the energy out of that relationship, which would otherwise bind you to it and the conflict within you about it.
Most of us are willing to succeed (not true for everyone – but we’ll talk about that another day), but we’re opposed to failure. So opposed, that we focus all of our attention on not failing. Would you rather steer your fulfillment-mobile toward success or away from failure? Orienting yourself around not-failing just isn’t an efficient way to get what you want. Imagine that you walk up to a snack machine and you’re really in the mood for some licorice. You could either push the licorice button or you could stress out about not accidentally pushing one of the other buttons. Avoiding failure doesn’t ensure success.
But if you’re present there’s wisdom that comes from failure. And sometimes what’s within that perceived failure is exactly what we need for ultimate success – a lesson, greater strength, a new opportunity. It’s all there for the taking.
Until you’re okay with the prospect of failing, failure will run your life. Your resistance to it gives it control over you. If failure feels like it would destroy you, you will avoid it, you will stop yourself from going big, you will hold back on your dreams, and you won’t fully show up.
Here’s the thing: it’s only really a failure if you decide it is. It’s more a state of mind than an objective reality. Kind of like being “in trouble.” Trouble only exists in a person’s mind. Have you ever known (or been one of) those kids who don’t mind going to their room or sitting in “time out”? Being in trouble doesn’t exist for them – and therefore they are in control (much to their parents’ dismay).
You get to decide. If something doesn’t work out, you can categorize it as a failure, or you can choose to see it as being rerouted toward success. But if you won’t even go into those areas of life that could possibly result in failure, you will greatly limit your potential on this planet.
Keeping your energy light and playful even when things aren’t going your way helps keep it all in perspective. One of my very favorite quotes is from Vern Black: “If it’s serious then you’re probably just intellectualizing it, not living it.”
I want to hear from you! What would you go for if you had no concern of failing? Tell me in the comments below.