Have you ever watched a baby learn to walk (Or, as I like to call it, fall on his face and butt 300 times)?
I was at a family gathering the other day and there was a little boy named Bryan. This little guy is thirteen months old and he’s right at the stage where he really wants to walk, but isn’t quite there yet. Picture this.
Awkwardly try to get up.
Again, wobbles as he gets to his feet.
Falls forward and bumps his face into the grass.
Rinse, wash, repeat.
Bryan did this over and over and over again as we all watched applauding his every effort. That little boy simply would not give up. The entire group was captivated watching him try to take his first steps. It was inspiring…but why was it so inspiring? It was just a baby learning to walk, everyone goes through that process.
We were all inspired because, as adults, we all would have given up after three attempts!
Just imagine if we learned to walk in our late teens or even early twenties. We’d be a society of people that crawl everywhere. You’d hear people saying things like:
“Oh yeah, that walking thing so isn’t me. I was born to crawl.”
“Walkers are just overachievers.”
“I tried that walking thing once. It was too scary for me.”
It’s so true, most of us would not have learned to walk if we had to go through the whole “learning to walk” thing as adults. It’s simply too hard. It would be embarrassing to fall. It would hurt. We would look stupid to our friends. It’s scary.
So why ever try to get up in the first place…
Because, if you learn to walk, the world is a vastly more awesome place to be.
It’s time to reframe the way we look at failures when trying to achieve our goals. Just like falling is part of the process of learning to walk, mistakes, errors, failures and screw-ups are part of the process when trying to achieve the goals you want—especially if they’re great and compelling goals.
Every great comedian must bomb many times
Every great athlete must miss the game-winning shot.
Every great politician must lose races.
As so must you make mistakes along the way.
Expect it, and go with it.
Take a minute to brainstorm a bunch of different things that could go wrong as you step outside of your comfort-zone and chase your goals. Write out the absolute worst things that could possibly happen to you as well as the most likely failures that can happen.
Now that you’ve written them all out, don’t you feel a little less intimidated by them? If any one of the things you wrote actually happens, so what? It’s not a big deal (unless you wrote “death”).
Constantly put failure into perspective. It’s part of the journey and the most successful people in any field have become great at dealing with it. So must you.
Written by Marc Wayshak, Motivational Conference Speaker