Success or Failure

Randy Gage posed a very interesting question on his blog. He asked, “How much success would you need before you would go into any endeavor expecting to succeed?”

My response…

Very thought provoking.

It generated questions of my own.

  1. Does success depend on prior success? Or –
  2. Does success depend upon learning from prior failures? Or –
  3. Does lack of success predict a future lack of success? Or –
  4. Should one attempt something new (no track record)?

How about you? Your answer will tell volumes about your chances for achieving your dreams. Too many of us want a “sure thing” before we attempt something new. How many dreams are left unfulfilled because of fear of failure. It reminds me of a story I heard once in church. There was a woman who purchased a very fine china set shortly after getting married. It was to be used only on the most special of occasions. Over the years, she became obsessed with ensuring that nothing happened to the china, so she never brought it out. No occasion was special enough, and when her children were cleaning out the attic after her death, they were all surprised to find the china upstairs, never having been used. Do you have china plates in your cabinets?

The other extreme is just as harmful. Reckless abandon. How many businesses fail and dreams are lost because of lack of preparation or the inability to understand and put failure in perspective? At some point in any endeavor that is going south very quickly, you have to pause and ask yourself, is this working? Do I have what it really takes to succeed? It is often a tough question as it is hard to distinguish between a challenge, a minor set back, or a huge mistake that you should get out of. That is what makes life so interesting. The problem with reckless abandon is that you don’t pause to ask the questions.

So What about you?

My take – Whenever I start something, I ALWAYS expect to succeed. Of course I often fail, but it is what I make of both my failures AND my successes that count.

All the best,
All the time,
JT


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