Do You Know How to Fail Marvelously?

If you know me well, you know that Rocky is my favorite movie. I have the entire Rocky series on DVD and love stories where an underdog rises up from the seemingly vice-grip jaws of defeat. In fact, while most of my heroes come from humble beginnings, all of them have to constantly fight to win the battles of life.

Do you know what another common denominator is in each of these people that I consider a hero? Each one of them has a track record of experiencing failure before the thrill of victory is reached. I guess seeing people fail brings about a cliff-hanger moment that inspires me.

I love to see people fail!

Yes, you read that right and, no, it's not because I have some sadistic streak that enjoys seeing people in pain. It's also not because it's good for my coaching business when people's lives or businesses come crashing down.

The reason that I love failure is that the only way to fail is to first try. If you never try then you will never fail...but you will never succeed either! You will never learn the lessons that failure teaches us and you will never know the triumph of climbing back up after you have been to the bottom of the pit.

Failing Marvelously

There is an old expression that goes "The master is the person who has failed more times than others have tried." That is a true saying! The best teacher is experience and if you want to master anything you must first give it a shot by trying.

Now, I'm not saying that you just nibble at the edges. I mean that you need to jump into it wholeheartedly and neck-deep. You need to run at it like you are going to knock a hole in the world. If nothing else, you will only fail because of a lack of experience. That is what I would call "failing marvelously" and that is one of the surest paths to success. Because the deeper you dive, the higher you climb, the harder you are going to come down, and the greater your opportunity to learn, and succeed.

Oh, you can play around and give a half-hearted effort. Living your life in this manner is much safer and far less painful, but it is also less rewarding and less likely to bring true success. I call it "half living" because you are only living half a life, therefore you are already half-dead.

Living that way is just a means for most people to find an excuse to quit.

"Oh, I tried this but it didn't work out."

"I started that but it fell apart."

So, try again, but harder this time. Reach higher! Look up and say "that was my upper limit" and then jump from there. You don't know the limit until you hit it and I guarantee that every time you hit it, it will be higher than it was last time.

You want happiness? You want success? You want a life that you can wake up each day looking forward to living to its fullest? Then dedicate yourself to failing marvelously until you succeed.

My challenge for you this week:

Try, try, try until you reach your ideal life.

  1. Make a list of the things you want to achieve but find difficult.

  2. Now, make a contingency plan of words and action steps you will employ whenever you have a failed attempt.

  3. To make yourself "quit-proof", always keep a copy of your contingency plan with you, and give a copy of it to a trusted friend or colleague. Empower them to push you onward and upward in tough times.

We are only a few days from Christmas Day! The takeaway message of the holiday season is to let hope, love, joy, and peace become a Jesus-demonstrated way of living. Live confidently and dismiss all thoughts of limitation.

Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays!

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