Thomas Alva Edison, reportedly, failed a nine hundred and ninety nine times before he discovered the light bulb at his thousandth try. When someone asked him how it felt to fail a nine hundred and ninety nine times he said that he didn’t fail, the lightbulb was an invention of a nine hundred and ninety nine steps.
Success and Failure are two sides of the same coin. One cannot exist without the other. Society often frowns upon failure. But it not something that should be seen in a negative light. We are so focused on avoiding failure that we forget to take risks. One such example is the mission to bring the damaged Apollo 13 back to Earth. Jerry C, a NASA flight controller said, “Fail-ure is not an option”. And that phrase has ingrained itself in our conscious.
A Famous Example
Oftentimes, endeavors beyond our scope of understanding are labelled as fail-ures. But when in action they turn out be manna from heaven indeed. Walt Disney was kicked out from a newspaper for lacking imagination and original ideas. He went on to build the Disney Studios. And he built the entire world of characters and stories which people now consider a dream.
Fail-ure can prove to be a blessing in disguise when it is accompanied by faith and endurance. If one has determination, refuse to give up and is willing to learn from one’s mistakes, therein lies the blessing. The journey which starts after the fail-ing is the blessing.
Fail-ures are the people who are unable to look for the silver lining and find the blessing. They get lost in the multitude of people. However those who do manage to find and obtain it become legends. Throughout our history, the greatest thinkers all seem to have one common feature, the fearlessness of fail-ure. From Saint Augustine, Charles Darwin and Leonardo DaVinci to Elon Musk and Bill Gates. Fail-ure is a powerful weapon to each success.
What to change?
As Min Yoongi once said, “We were born to be real, not to be perfect.” and fail-ure is very real. Success can never be perfect but it can be very real. And all we need to do is live it. To be successful you have to train yourself to see fail-ure as necessary to your progress. See failure as a stepping stone to your ultimate success. Instead of a hurdle that is keeping you from what you want.
Our learning processes rely on failure to drive us forward. So, failure is necessary. Doing it wrong is a really good way to learn how to do it right. But oftentimes people are so afraid of doing it wrong that they never try.
It’s not as bad as you think
People fear failure because it is related with discomfort. As human beings we tend to gravitate towards pleasure and away from discomfort. This is normal and natural and it holds us back from an own personal growth. To prevent this, we can either rise up and step into the fear or sink down and avoid it. Your ability to rise up and step into it will determine the life satisfaction and success you receive.
An alternate way to look at failure would be to see yourself as a person who fails a lot. Don’t view yourself as a failure because then your identity becomes synonymous with failure. Change the way you look at failure. Failing is a blessing for failing is just the start of a new chapter in your life.