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Destination: imperfection

It’s not them, it’s you (gasp!)

This week I read a great post by Neil Hedley, about how some people fail to realize while it may feel better to blame others when things don’t go their way, at some point they need to take responsibility and realize – maybe it’s them.

Or, to quote him directly and change the perspective, “maybe it’s you.”

Maybe it wasn’t meant to be your opportunity. Maybe today isn’t your day. Maybe you just didn’t pull it off.

Maybe no one sabotaged you.  Maybe no one else made a mistake. Maybe, just maybe, the fault lies with you.

Did that sting a little?

Trust me, at one point or another, we have all been there.  We have felt the hurt, the disappointment.  We have seen the worst things we think of ourselves come true, we have lived our own shortcomings.

It can be awful.

But wait – hold on a second.

Tell me, who the hell decided perfection was our destination?

Who has the time and energy to be perfect at everything?

Not me.  Not you.  Not anyone I know.

So why are we trying?

When did we decide that we needed to always win? When did someone make a rule that we aren’t allowed to just say “it’s not in my skill set” or the more likely “I really suck at that”.

Facing our shortcomings is a hard skill to learn – but it’s sort of freeing once we grow enough that we can say “it’s not a strength of mine”.  I’m confident enough in my intelligence and capabilities to freely admit there are areas where I will never, ever excel.

Set goals, work hard, and aim for targets that make sense.  But don’t ever assume that you need to win everything you do, or that it’s not okay to fail.  Don’t spend your time or energy blaming others, or yourself when it happens.

What if we could free ourselves from blame altogether?  What if, instead of blaming others, or ourselves, we put that energy into the next opportunity?  What if we used that energy to find the opportunities that truly are a good fit for us, thereby increasing our chance of the success we wanted in the first place?

What if we could always remember that after every chance, a dozen more swiftly follow?  Every opportunity has more coming right behind it, if we open our minds to them.

What would you do?  How high would you reach?

There’s a quote I often hear about failure that I like:

“What would you attempt if you knew you could not fail?”

But better yet…

“What would you attempt if you knew failure wasn’t the end of the world?”



Photo credit:  stock.xchg


  • Annabel

    September 20, 2011., 5:13 pm /

    Great post, Jen. And so important for us to learn that failure can lead to some of the greatest things we'll experience. Thanks for the reminder!

    • Anonymous

      September 20, 2011., 8:20 pm /

      Annabel, you are so right. Thanks for your comment. ; )

  • Barry

    September 21, 2011., 12:20 pm /

    When we realize that "failure" is simply nature's way of letting us find a better way to achieve our goals, there will be less finger pointing and a lot less "blue air". Great piece, I now have another place to spend my mornings having coffee.

    • Anonymous

      September 24, 2011., 9:23 pm /

      Sorry Barry, your comment was hiding on me! Thanks for reading, and taking the time to offer your thoughts! And what would we do without that morning java? Hope you are having a great weekend. ; )

  • Capital Mom

    September 28, 2011., 11:30 pm /

    Failure scares me and stops me from trying to do things. I'm trying not to let it.

  • Capital Mom

    September 28, 2011., 11:30 pm /

    Failure scares me and stops me from trying to do things. I'm trying not to let it.

Comments are closed.