Posted by Mary Beth Dahl on October 10, 2013
That’s not exactly why I’ve been absent from my blogging world, but I’m sure it’s part of it. This “bad place” I’ve been visiting had me sidetracked and distracted. It had me wrestling with unfixable problems and dismal thoughts. It stopped me.
But today I’ve had a breakthrough.
Today I realized something.
In the midst of me standing on my soapbox urging us all to do something, since the only sure way to fail is to never try, I forgot an important detail.
I forgot that if we try, we just might fail.
Actually, there’s not really a “might” about it. I think I can say with great certainty that no one can perfect a particular skill/job/talent/dream on their very the first attempt. That means failure is not only inevitable, it’s imminent.
However, I read something that got me thinking. I read it in a Tweet from one of those people I haven’t met, but who I “follow”. (I would quote it for you, but this fellow evidently tweets a hundred times a day, and after sifting through tweets for about an hour, I got shut down by the Twitter folks who wouldn’t let me search any more.) Anyway, this insightful stranger reminded me that victory is built on failure.
Success it would seem consists of letdowns, fiascos, and disappointments. Sure, there are those shining moments when all is clear and triumph is within grasp, but there evidently needs to be a certain amount of trial and error also.
I took on a new role at my workplace recently. That’s what got me slumming it in the bad place. Don’t get me wrong. I love my job and the people there, and I want to challenge myself and grow, but I tried to do something that I’m not very good at, and I (ahem) struggled. A lot.
Almost every day I left work wondering if I could actually do this new job or if I even wanted to keep trying. It’s not comfortable pushing myself like that. Things seem to go much better when I stick with what I know, but that gets very limiting. So I stepped out and tried something new, and I crashed and burned, and got up again. And then I crashed and burned, and got up again. And then I crashed…well, you get the picture.
But then I read that tweet, told God I was done trying to not mess up, and I let go.
And I flew.
Just a little ways, but it was enough to boost my confidence.
I’ve been saying that the only sure way to fail is to never try. But the truth is failure comes no matter what. It is a sure thing.
It’s victory that’s not the sure thing. Just because we try doesn’t mean we will be tasting victory any time soon. Some success takes time. Some victories only come when we persevere. When we persevere, we gain character. Character gives us hope, and hope does not disappoint us.
Never give up. Never give in. We are not alone. We can find that out when we persevere.