It probably sounds pretty cruel when I say that I want people to fail. There are friends of mine that I want to fail. And when I say that in a variety of different ways, it might appear that I’m heartless or maybe I’m being jealous or vindictive, but it’s none of that. I want them to fail because what they’re doing isn’t working. Now, a lot of us have things that we’re working on that also aren’t working. So why do I want some of them to fail and others not to fail? And here’s why. These people that I want to fail, and as I’m talking about this, I can picture their face specifically and there’s more than one. But the reason why I want them to fail and why they need to fail is because they’re either too prideful or too arrogant to change. If you’re banging your head against the wall and you think that you’re so smart and this is the best idea to get to the other side and you are not willing to listen to other advice, you’re not willing to listen to the people that are going to tell you, stop banging your head against the wall and go around to the door on the other side or maybe ask and see if somebody has the key or possibly it’s not even the building that you want to get into.
But yet with all this information and all these people looking to help and all the history about how banging your head against the wall, it’s going to do nothing but cause you pain and you continue to do it. You’re going to have to have your head split open to understand. Now we’ve all met them. Maybe we’ve been that person, but there are people that need to bang their head against the wall again because they still don’t learn. And when you are this person, you’re generally too prideful to listen to advice. You’re often too cocky to seek out counsel and you’re probably too arrogant to change, so you need to fail. And that’s why I welcome that failure for me or for you when we’re that type of person. See all those years of school taught us incorrectly, that failure is a bad thing. The big F that came on top of that paper that I didn’t prepare for didn’t come in a happy color with glitter all around it and a smiley face.
It was a big red F and it was often written with very little compassion because failure was made out to be bad. So we did everything we could to avoid failure. Some people decided that memorizing everything and questioning, nothing would get us that grade that we desired, but realizing that we learned nothing in the process. Well nothing but memorization. Some of us didn’t even care about what we were studying, so we wound up getting poor marks, reprimanded and being meant to feel like we weren’t smart as the other ones. Some of us knowing that we were going to fail and be reprimanded for it cheated so we didn’t have to do the work or the punishment, but either way, the only thing we were trying to do was to avoid failure. But what if failure was looked at as a good thing? What if we embraced failure because it meant that we’re not there yet, but I absolutely believe that failure does way more positive things for us than success does.
Failure rarely makes you arrogant, but I can’t even tell you the amount of successful people that I know that have become arrogant and big headed with that success. These were people that were very hungry for knowledge. They were humble, they were curious, they truly were looking to help and be helped and the content failures and the uncertainty of it kept them on their toes and kept them relatable. But then success happened and now all those years of failure, they were able to push back against. They were able to use that success to try to prove other people wrong and show others that they really were smarter than everybody said they were. And with that came the arrogance and it set the scene and it’s something to protect yourself against if you’re going there because it’s absolutely true and proven over and over again that the pride comes before the fall.
So those people too, for their own sake, I root for failure because more success will not make them more humble, more success. It’s only going to fuel that arrogance. Failure I’ve learned brings humility. It brings perspective and it brings the understanding that something needs to change. Why is it so hard to repeat as a champion? Because the drive to succeed and to learn is so much greater when you’ve lost the previous time than when you just won. I’ve talked to a lot of people about this and maintaining and keeping what you have is less motivational than getting better from where you were. So these people that I was talking about earlier, the ones that I want to fail, I wanted the fail for their own good because it’s the best thing for them. Having fluke victories or getting ahead because somebody gives you something that you didn’t earn, that’s not success.
That’s a bandaid and it’s covering up the fact that you’re not learning or getting better. Failure will allow them to see differently. It will allow them to make adjustments and to pivot and to try different things they weren’t doing when they thought they were right. Subconsciously, I root for my own failure. There is no time that I’m less motivated than when everything’s going really well. It was a primary factor why we killed our photography business. I was bored and it was too easy to just do enough for everything we needed without a huge challenge. To me, that sounds like a job, a job where it’s guaranteed there’s little risk of failure and it’s simply just not inspiring to me, so I want failure for you as well because you’re going to learn more from it. You’re going to get better because of it, and it’s going to keep you humble and grounded so that when you do win, you can have pride that you earned it from the things that you learned and grew from.
And you get to realize that when you finally get there, it didn’t do what you thought it was going to do. And it allows you to just enjoy the journey so that you can keep taking small steps to consistently get better. But knowing that you always need a challenge ahead of you, one that is very likely to fail because certainty is nothing if not boring. Oh, by the way, I haven’t mentioned it in a while. For the new listeners, I wrote a book called freelance to freedom two years ago, and I recorded the audio book and I give it away for free. So if you’d like to head over to our website, total life freedom.com/ [inaudible] book, sign up, download the book, enjoy it. And if you do, please let me know what you think. I’ll talk to you tomorrow.