“Try again. Fail again. Fail better.” ~ Samuel Beckett
On Tuesday I talked about how questions were an important part of my talk at Brock University last week. Another important part was emphasizing the positive aspects of failure. It would make life better and less stressful if we all embraced failure. If we saw failure as an event in our life instead of our life. Failing is what makes us better, what makes our choices better, what makes our work better. It can be exciting – Craig recently talked about Theatrefolk’s fail projects. It’s only failure if you don’t learn anything.
“If you’re willing to fail interestingly, you tend to succeed interestingly.” ~ Edward Albee
I know that the students I was talking to will have trouble with this concept. With good reason. They have been taught to fear failure. School teaches us since day one that failure=bad. That there is only one answer for the test and if you do well on the test, you’re doing well in life. Fail the test? Fail at life. But if they even just start thinking about how failure could help them grow, that’s a success.
- Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basket ball team.
- Walt Disney declared bankruptcy when he was 22 years old.
- Abraham Lincoln lost political seats eight times before being elected President.
- Both John Grisham and JK Rowling was rejected by 12 publishers.
- Salvador Dali was expelled from Art school.
Steve Jobs gave a very powerful speech in 2005 at Stanford which really addressed the Fail=good concept. Read it here.
“Failure is only the opportunity to begin again more intelligently.” ~ Henry Ford