Breaking Bread with your Monster Under the Bed

To continue the thoughtstream from my last post on creativity and human potential, I'm pointing you to CNN's article:

How to Fail Your Way to Success.

The message is a simple one I'd come across with through reading and studying eastern philosophies. The buddhist view seems to be, as blogger and teller of stories Communicatrix explains, to lean right into it. Move towards it, and sit down with it. Make it a cup of coffee and a poundcake if it means you can get comfortable in its presence. List what you don't like about this monster and think through each bullet point until you can feel the emotions that come with the failure, then decide, one by one, whether you can accept it.

It's ironic that for the most part, every time I've failed spectacularly while attempting something new, I've been pleased with the resulting story I get to tell. And I actually smile hard or laugh whenever I recount each one of them. What's more, I'm nearly compelled to announce my failures. Just like this: There's the time I got stuck (impaled!) on a fence between the Daytona Airport and the Speedway during race week, poised in full view of several sports network trucks with running camera equipment.

Or maybe it was more like the occasion I moved up from riding a Honda 250 to a Sportster 1200 for the very first time and actually tried using the instructor's lessons on putting only one foot down when coming to a full stop. I survived, the bike's clutch handle and exhaust pipes didn't.

These were very small and personal failures. No fortunes were lost this time, and in the end, I'm infinitely more pleased with myself for trying than I am upset with the failure.

Does this pride-in-taking-the-dare over embarassment-for-the-defeat hold true for you as well? How can we keep this feeling in mind and use it to our advantage when we're poised to take our next leap?

We'll have a hell of a story. Do you have one to tell?

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