What is success? The Webster’s dictionary calls it [attaining] a favorable or desired outcome. What is success to you? Success, as I write about it, is when we attain certain goals or benchmarks for which we have put in our plan. Our plan for life, betterment, health, fitness, education, whatever. But why does success require failure?
Let me clarify what I mean by failure. If we are using benchmarks or goals to get us to a desired place or outcome, we may not always succeed at tasks, steps, or goals in that journey. Missing these is what I am referring to as failure. Failure may seem like a strong word, but stick with me. We missed the mark so we failed at our objective.
Failure has a stigma attached to it. I often hear people say that failure is a sign of weakness. That we must not admit failure, but continue on. Why is that? Who are we trying to impress by ignoring failure to not show weakness? News flash, most people can see right through that, see the failure, and then see the inability to own it. That sure looks like a sign of weakness to some.
Instead look at failure as a reason, a motivation, and a key step in us finding success. It takes strength to recognize when we fail or where we fall short, but it is so important because many of us try to ignore these failures. If you want to grow, if you want to get better, if you want to move forward, you cannot ignore the failures. Recognizing these holdups allows us to correct course. When we correct course, we realign with our trajectory.
I have come to a realization about a few things where I fail and struggle. When it comes to my weight loss journey, I fail about how much food I eat in certain situations. Specifically, when we have people over for a meal or eat in a social setting. For some reason, I have a harder time controlling my intake in these settings. I don’t know exactly why but I know that I need to be more attuned to this. One evening of overeating can nullify 3 days of solid dedication and discipline.
When it comes to my emotional and mental health, I recognize that sitting inside all day with work or watching TV is detrimental. I have set goals and targets to let the outdoors help me with my mental and emotional state. If I fail to move and get outside, I know the effect. I need to move and I need to get outside. Correct course. Admit failure. Resolve to fix it.
These are just two examples. Like I said, failure can sound harsh here, but I am emphasizing that I need to own the actions and choices in my life that take me off course. When I own them, I can change and get better. If I ignore them, or pretend they do not exist, I will never fix them, never grow from them, and they will continue to plague my efforts. The kicker is, everyone around me may notice them… but I will not.
There is freedom in this accountability.