A note on failure

Failure is not the enemy.

So many times people will try something new and more often than not fail at it. The typical response is to give up and say that you are just not good at whatever it is you just tried. Think about it. That mindset has been ingrained in so many of us from such a young age it becomes our default mode. It’s why you see so many people that don’t want to go outside of their lanes and try new things, or meet new people, or change their beliefs.

I’ll give you a story. Growing up I was always a tall lanky kid. My parents always liked to boast that I was taller than my first grade teacher when I was in first grade! Granted she was only 4’10” but I was always in that 99th percentile of age. Because of this lankiness and lack of coordination at an early age, I tended to shy away from activities that I might have been good at had I given them a shot. One year when I was about 8 years old I tried my hand at competitive swimming. I had grown up in and around water my entire life so it was only natural that I gave it a shot. I remember starting out and going to swim practices and I was terrible. I could make it down the length of the pool but I was getting passed by everyone else in the water. That first day I built up a wall around swimming telling myself that I was no good and that I would never be any good and it affected me the entire rest of the season. That ended up being the one and only time I ever tried to swim competitively despite the chance that I might have been good at it had I kept up with it.