Think You Can Fail Only If You Try? Think Again.


redefining failureWe may hesitate to do something or try new things because we don’t want to fail, but what if not taking action could lead to an even bigger failure?

If we tried something and didn’t attain the desired outcome, we define the event as a failure. We tried. It didn’t work, or was a catastrophic disaster; therefore, we failed.

Failure, it seems, is a result of taking action.

“Just do it!” they say. Well, maybe you just did it and hated it, or perhaps the outcome was worse than you expected or could have prepared for.

This is why we can easily smooth talk ourselves out of taking action. Trying to avoid failure is a comforting excuse to not take that risk or try that new thing and remain safely in our comfort zone.

Taking action is scary because it’s an opportunity for us to fail; it makes us vulnerable. We say, “If I do this thing, I could fail miserably” or “The result may not be what I intended.” The action may indeed lead to failure; so we procrastinate, make excuses, or put the thought out of our minds. We nestle snuggly back into the welcoming warmth of our comfort zone. Safe and sound from the big bully, failure.

But it’s time to redefine failure. Over the past several months I’ve been examining this word — fail…

What do you think?