We want to begin this by saying that we definitely don’t know it all or even claim that we do. We are simply sharing things that we’ve learned through Foster and other experiences. This whole life and work thing is a process and it takes a long time to get it right. As our good friend Sean says, “the pursuit is happiness” and we believe that wholeheartedly.
Nothing worth doing in this life comes without a sizable amount of risk. It may not always be financial, but there is always something at stake when we move into uncharted territory. The level of uncertainty may change but during these times there are always a few things at play that will determine our endeavor's success. One major element is our viewpoint on failure.
Everyone has heard a failure quote:
"Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better."~ Samuel Beckett
"Failure provides the opportunity to begin again, more intelligently." ~ Henry Ford
"The fastest way to succeed is to double your failure rate." ~ Thomas Watson Sr.
“I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.” ~ Thomas A. Edison
It’s an entirely different thing to fail on our own though because when it's ours, we think that means WE are the failure. I was raised with the understanding that failure is something to be avoided. The less failure I had the better I was. But what happens when I'm not equipped at all for the task ahead or I just simply want to experiment with a new project? How can I succeed at what I don't know? So when I know what I have to do and literally every possible road has nothing but signs that say, "caution failure ahead" I just become paralyzed.
Is the potential for missing out on what may be possible greater than my fear of failure? Almost always the answer is yes. Everything in me says to stay comfortable, but if I truly want to grow, then I have to move forward into the unknown.
We should really start viewing failure as a checkpoint along the way to success.
Experience has taught me that I learn the most when I risk the most. There is more satisfaction in achieving 50% of a seemingly impossible goal than 100% of a comfortable objective.
We have to get to a point where we realize that who we are is a process and we won’t change if we never leave behind what is safe. Our work will continue to be the same, our relationships won’t deepen, and our lives and work will become a cycle.
Recently we set out to raise $50,000. An ambitious goal for a company with only 3 months under our belt. Spoiler alert, we raised $16,350, but guess what WE RAISED $16,350!!!! Of course we wanted to reach our goal and we tried our very hardest. It was a hard 24hrs after the fact but all that we learned, the people we connected with, and the money we did raise put us so much farther ahead than we would have been without it!
If we can honestly change our perspective on failure we will be much more successful in what we pursue; and also rid ourselves of a really unnecessary fear.
Each day decide to embrace failure, because ultimately failure is inevitable; let it work for you instead of limit you.
Be brave folks. Be brave.