A little concept called Failure
From time to time my mind wanders and starts to think about random things (well...maybe it looks that random to others). Lately, this little concept of Failure showed up in my mind out of the blue and started moving things around. And while I was tempted to listen to it because it’s in our human nature (I’ll speak about this later on), I also realised that Failure does not actually EXIST! It doesn’t!
Peaked your interest? Good! Grab a cup of tea and your favourite notebook to take notes (because I know you have one - we all have one) and let’s dive in.
PIN ME FOR A LATER READ!
Ok, first things first - how did our minds end up in the Failure department store in the first place? Well, by word of mouth obviously. Pretty much just like in the way you go shopping for a dress or a piece of furniture based on your friends' recommendation, the same way, you’ve ended up here - by "default recommendation"!
Look back through your life. When you were young, you had no concept of failure, right? You knew a thing or two about winning (a game, a prize etc), but if you were to lose something or be bad at something, you didn’t think of yourself as a failure. That is until adults started suggesting that around you or worse - directly to you.
Fast forward to the present day. In today’s culture, at the first sign of something going wrong, we are the first ones to think that we’ve failed (in some way or another). And if after that, this belief is validated by some other external force (be it in the form of a friend, family member or colleague at work), our whole world comes crashing down on us. WE ARE SUCH A FAILURE!
Let me give you an example. A couple of years ago I used to work in a studio (that for the purpose of this article shall rename nameless). I gave my all every day, always searching, always learning something new in order to be the best at my job. Maybe it was the beginner’s naivety, but whatever it was, I wanted to be the best at my job. Not to necessarily move up “the corporate ladder” but to just do and be the best that I can be for myself - that’s how I do most things anyway (can’t roll any other way). One day, after finishing and handing in my assignments for the day, I got called in the director’s office and have my skills challenged because, presumably, I had failed at my task.
The senior architect on the project (and my immediate boss) complained about the fact that I changed the design of the project and that it was not as he expected it to be - thus meaning that I was wrong and so, as a result, I’ve failed in my task. Back then I used to be scared to speak up or stand up for myself, so I fell silence. Luckily for me, another senior architect that was around the office at the time, came in to see what the commotion was all about. He understood immediately what I did and spoke in my place, explaining that I wasn’t wrong, but that I was too precise and detailed for my benefit. Maybe even let’s say...too literal in my drawings.
That wasn’t the first or the last time I experienced something similar that would challenge my beliefs and the most important thing, the belief in myself.
Believing in yourself is a powerful thing, if not the MOST important thing that you can have. It helps you dream, imagine, create and get stuff done. It literally gets you anywhere.
To have that core belief challenged results in the failure of any achievement and perhaps any potential human progress (we don’t know where the next Einstein could be).
That is what I hated at the time - the fact that by listening to other people claiming to know my background and all the things I may or may not have known up to that point, I let them control me. I hated the fact that they made me forget who I was, what I’ve learned and what I could do. I started thinking that maybe I was indeed a failure, maybe I wasn’t good at what I do, even though I loved it with every bone in my body.
Yes, we all make mistakes from time to time, but that doesn’t mean we are a failure. Never let anyone make you forget who you are. Only you know your mind the best and what its limits are. You are the only one who knows the whole story and has literally devoted years to its growth!
As human beings, if we ever do something that is completely new or we have no information about the process beforehand, we end up being a bit scared. After all it's something unpredictable with unknown results. So we tend to look for validation or at least a hint of wisdom from others. It’s in our human nature. Better to stand with others than alone, strength in numbers etc - it sounds familiar, doesn't it? By doing that, we give permission to others to play the “expert” card on us and be the ones who have total control over our actions and thinking.
Don’t believe me? Just ask someone to share their opinion on a matter you care about or are an expert in. If you are not on the same wavelength, you’ll pretty soon be in the failure department in their opinion. I bet you they’ll even have an idea of what they would have done “in your place”. If you don’t know what I am talking about, read this!
So to get back on track, all of these feelings and thoughts came back to me a couple of days ago when I was thinking about how to approach a project. What was the best step to take? If I were to make X or Y step, would it succeed or will it fail? Then it hit me. Failure does not actually exist!
Just think about it. In every step or stage in your life (when you made actual progress that you were aware of), did you fail? NO. You either progressed or you learned where you needed to work a bit more, improve so that you can succeed. Let’s say you want to get your driving license - you study, take the test and you don’t pass. What do you do? You study more, prepare more, retake the exam until you pass.
It’s all about the mindset. You either WIN or you LEARN!
There is no failure. It never was. It was only something adults would say to us in order to scare us into responsibility. It was a learning method and concept we needed as we grew up. It prepared us for life. But that’s all it was.
I don’t know about you but for me, finally realising that failure doesn’t exist (that it’s just a state of mind) it is so liberating! But this is nothing new my fellow peeps. This has been said many times before, either in books or movies or inspirational videos, in every possible way, I just wasn't opened to the idea I guess (I was still holding on to something - what that is, I really don't know).
So this is what I wanted to share with you, my little ducklings - DREAM BIG! Don’t be afraid to start something or do something just because nobody has done it before or you are standing alone on the path you've chosen to walk on. Just look at explorers or scientists. If they would have let this fear of failure cripple them, they wouldn’t have made any discoveries and the human race would not be where it is today.
Dream big detail lovers, because anything you can dream of you can achieve. And make a difference. You just have to start!
Have you had a similar experience? Have you been holding your dreams back because of this fear? Let me know below in the comments or on our Facebook Page. Alternatively, you can even let me know on Instagram if it's easier for you - just tap @detailmovement and share your thoughts. Cannot wait to hear from you!
All images that are credited as '©Detail Movement', are done by Raluca Vaduva for Detail Movement. All rights reserved. All pictures that are not my own, I credit them to the best of my knowledge & research, to their online sources. I do not claim ownership over them in any way.