I’m an Expert Failure

I’m an expert failure.

There’s no way around it.  I’ve failed at so many things that it’s almost depressing.

Maybe you’re like me and you just feel like you can’t ever quite seem to get over the hump.  Success is always just right within arms reach but it’s just a bit too far off, or too fuzzy to make out.

Maybe you’re even more like me and success isn’t even around the corner.  You’ve failed so hard that you aren’t even sure which way is up anymore.  Success isn’t even on the horizon.  You’d just be thrilled with survival.

Everybody likes to talk about how Thomas Edison invented some katrillion ways to not make a light bulb and then they like to tell us that success is for the people that didn’t give up.  I really want to believe them but sometimes I’m just not feeling it.

I know a lot about failure though.  I could seriously get tenure at a major university if they needed a professor of failure.  I know how to fail at blogging, business, ministry, dating, marriage, parenting,  divorce, divorced parenting, divorced dating… Shoot I even know how to fail at little stuff like making mac ‘n cheeze. (You may not have thought that was possible but I am here to tell you that it is.)

I’ve come to believe though, that everybody fails just as often, and just as hard as I do.  It’s just only us brave folks that admit how often we fail.  Too many people out there are trying to hide their failures and to be honest, I’ve tried to hide mine too but it’s just way too much work.  My goal for tomorrow is to fail abysmally at hiding my failures.  I’m going to be honest and maybe, just maybe, if I start failing at hiding my failures I can start failing at failing.

Take your time….

… And now you’ve got it.

Who’s down to join me.  Lets start failing on purpose because Edison was right.  Failure is just knowledge of how not to do something.  The more knowledge we gain about failure the closer we come to finding the nuggets of non-failure.

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How to actually let go and move on

This post is part 2 of “I wish I could hate you”If you missed that post you can find it here.

 

There’s an old proverb that says “Better the devil you know than the devil you don’t”. 

This proverb was, I’m assuming, designed to help minimize risk.  I can see it being advantageous in military or business endeavors.  Maybe even in sports.  In those situations knowledge of your enemy or competition is key. It makes sense to say that having an enemy you know, is better than having and enemy that you don’t know.

I thought the phrase was interesting, and I’m a nerd so I spent some time trying to find the origin of the phrase and something kidna sad emerged.  Like any old phrase it has been misquoted and distorted over time but the most common modification that I found completely changed the entire meaning of the phrase.

The most common misquotation goes something like this: “Better to have something bad but known, than something (that could turn out to be good) but is (currently) unknown.”  How sad is that.

We’d rather settle for familiar garbage than pursue spectacular dreams.

Our fear of the unknown imprisons us to the negative impact of the known.

When we hold on to things, ideas, or people; what we are actually doing is giving those things control in our life.  We are telling those things that they get to decide the scope and range of our options.

So what would happen in your life if you let go of the devil you knew and pursued the angel that you didn’t?

Maybe your devil is a person but maybe it’s just the idea of a person that you can’t seem to shake.  Maybe your devil is a job that you have but don’t like.  Maybe it’s the car that you’re driving that keeps breaking down.  Maybe it’s the gym that you go to but always leave feeling crappy after working out with a bunch of muscle-bound meat heads surrounded by botoxed-Barbie dolls.

(I hate gyms but kind of like alliteration, can you tell?)

Whatever you’re devil is, it’s time to let go.letting-go

Here’s one way to start.  Take out a piece of paper and write down your devil on that page up at the top.  Once you’ve done that make a list of things that YOU can do to let go of, and remove that devil from your life.  Notice that I capitalized YOU.  The only person that can make a change is you. 

Often we think of letting go as a passive action but that is why we never ACTIVELY let go.  Letting go is an action and we must act in order for the action to take place.  Your fingers and arms (and probably your mind and emotions) must move away from the object that you are holding and then in many cases they must actively push that thing away.

Now, Listen closely because this is where people mess up.  (Ask me how I know.)

Once our hands have done the action of letting go, we leave them open and they just kind of sit there.  But unlike objects at rest that tend to stay at rest, hands that open tend to close.  If we don’t push away the devil and then close our hand around something that is positive, our hands get bored and tend to reach back out and pick up the very thing that we set out to let go of.

The best way that I have found to successfully let go of devils (aka addictions or vises) is to fill my hands back up once I’ve emptied them with positive habits.

Don’t just let go of laziness, grab on to a day planner.  Don’t just let go of a bad relationship, fill your life with positive ones.  Don’t just let go of an addiction, build positive habits.

I’d love to hear about the devils that you are letting go of but what is more important is the angels that you are picking up.  Let me know in the comments.

What should my consequences be?

So I want to start posting twice a week but I’m scared to death that I won’t be able to keep up.

I’ve learned though that there are three things that I have to do in order to make a goal happen.  1) Set a goal 2) Tell everybody and 3) Set Consequences.

The Goal has been set. And now I’ve told everybody.  All I need now is consequences.  Comment with your ideas.

That being said, I want to make this blog a thing, and everything I read is telling me that great content, created and published often, is the biggest step you can take toward building your “tribe”.  So I’m gonna quit being scared, and start peeing into the wind.

Be patient with me as I get the hang of it. Know that, for sure I’ll post every Tuesday morning, but check back on Fridays as well. I’m trying to think of a manageable way to keep Friday’s interesting.

I may pick an inspiring quote each Friday and discuss what I think it means.

Maybe friday can be more of a journal/update from Andrew day. I’d like to do a better job of keeping track of my goals. This might be a fun place to do that. I’m sure that as the blog grows, Friday’s will evolve.

For today, I’ll leave you with this quote. It’s from “The Making of a Martial Artist” by Sang Kyu Shim:

“To have changed often is to have lived much”image

Have a fantastice, change filled weekend everybody!

See you on Tuesday.