This is my all-time most favorite picture of my daughter, Aria. She was 2 in this picture and is now 3 1/2. It was taken in Nova Scotia, Canada in December. The wind was piercing and harsh that day on the beach. Yet she faced it head on. She actually paused for a moment to turn in its direction and stay awhile. She owned it, didn’t back down and it even looks like she was enjoying the journey.
This post is not meant to be about my daughter. Instead it’s about failure. Like Aria sought out the piercing wind in her face without backing down, so we should actually seek out failure. Yes, seek it out. Like actually chase it down.
I love this quote by Ryan Leak, “What if chasing failure was the quickest way to succeed? Chasing failure took me further than chasing success ever did.”
So counterintuitive, right? We are so conditioned to only do the things we know we can succeed at. Because it doesn’t feel good to lose. But what a burdensome lid this places on our potential. I wonder what we will miss out on when we choose to only pursue the things we know we can win at? What would this world look like if we were all actually willing to “chase failure”? To stretch so far out of our comfort zones that it produces failure, but the kind of failure that also generates learning, growth, innovation, creativity, progress, influence and ultimately success for ourselves and those around us.
When in your life have you asked the question, “what if I fail?” Pause for 30 seconds (I dare you) and think back to that moment and think back to the challenge you faced. Now instead of wondering if you will fail, what if instead we all started asking, “What if I don’t?” Think about that. Imagine what it would look like. Where would you be? What would you do? What would you look like? Who would be with you? What’s the expression on your face? How are you walking? What are you wearing? How will your husband/wife or mom or children look at you? What are people saying about you? (Sit there for awhile and think about that)
What picture did you paint in your mind? Start with that vision and then just go out and pursue it and try to fail. You might. But at least you could say you did something about the life you really want to live.
Repeat this after me (using your own name, of course). “My name is Leah Lauchlan and I am about to fail. Or maybe I won’t.”