I’ve been thinking about failure a lot lately.
Yes, yes, before all of you positive thinkers jump all over me with your law of attraction stuff, just hear me out.
I’m a fairly-well educated, reasonably intelligent person. However, at this point in my life, it’s tricky for me to learn in a formal way (like attending classes). That leaves me a couple of methods for learning new things: books, the internet, and failure.
At any given time, I’m usually reading a couple of books. I really got a lot out of The Four Hour Workweek, and I’m halfway through The E-Myth. Next will probably be Nichecraft.
The problem with books, is, they take a while to write and get published. And by the time they are published, things could have changed, especially in this crazily-fast-paced internet world. So, a great deal of my learning takes place these days online. E-books, e-courses, and a Google Reader full of great RSS feeds like CopyBlogger, TwitTips, and IttyBiz.
That leaves failure.
If you’re willing, failure can be your greatest teacher. Okay, so you screwed up. Intentionally or not, what went wrong? How can you change it so that it doesn’t happen the next time? Maybe that won’t work, either, but keep trying until you get it right.
This guy, Albert Einstien (famous for his hairstyle), once defined insanity as: “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” I understand he may have known something about failure. And success. And most importantly, success through failure.
Hooray for Rebecca Coleman and your blog of sheer awesomeness.
Thought I might point out, however, that your link to the twitips site is a bad one . . . oopsy.
Keep blogging ‘Becca!
Thanks for the heads up, Matthew, I’ve fixed it.
It’s taken a long time for me to learn that failure is valuable, and that’s been terrible for my growth as an artist and performer. I love this Samuel Beckett quotation, which my friend sent me on a postcard: “Ever tried? Ever failed? No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.”
I love that: “Fail Better.”
Loved this, Rebecca. I’m going to pass your blog on to my students.