Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Failure and Defeat

“How do you typically react to failure or defeat?”

The bottom line is that no one ever truly seeks to fail at anything, even though we are all aware of the importance of failure in the equation that equals success. In order to find success one must be willing to risk, and face failures. It is also true that we may often feel like a failure and yet in actuality not be. Our own expectations may often serve as our undoing.

But the question was how I typically react to failure. I’d love to say that I take it in stride, but I know that’s not an honest answer. I tend to be able to work through it, but it depends on how
I’ve perceived myself to have failed. How committed I was to the project prior to the failure makes a world of difference.

In general, I’ve been known to revert back into myself following a failure. I remember that my freshman year of high school was particularly trying. Looking back on it now I’m aware that I was never truly in any danger of failing, but I was afraid of the distinct possibility.

I can remember one morning in early February of that school year. I woke up that morning after only a couple hours of sleep in tears. I was convinced that the paper I had been up all night writing was awful and therefore what was the point of any of it. My mind at that point was already set on a future years away. It was ingrained in my mind that success was paramount.

That morning I felt uncomfortable in my own skin. I couldn’t stop the tears, and I couldn’t coherently describe their cause. I recall my parents telling me I needed to stay home and take the day off, and I weakly argued against it. In my mind I need to go, I needed to be there. It was important, and yet I knew just as well as my parents did that I couldn’t go that day.

That was the say that I was crushed by my fear of even the idea of impending failure. I don’t respond well to failure, though I tend to save my meltdowns for those moments that I am alone. When surrounded by others I am more likely to become even more closed off or even play it off as being no big deal. I tend to over think things, and especially when I perceive myself to have failed.

Beyond these simple facts though is the truth that I failed to post yesterday, and therefore I will be making two posts this weekend.

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