Batman failed

Every time I write about how I failed and the lesson learned, I get great reactions.

How brave of you for publicly admitting you’ve failed. It must be so hard to write about it. The lessons learned are both helpful and inspiring. Thank you so much, you’re really the man. I love you. Will you marry me? Xoxo.

Well, almost.

When I talk with people around me, I realize I’ve failed much more than they did. I don’t think I’m that bad, but it appears I’ve tried much more things than they’ll ever do. I believe it is OK as long as you never make the same mistake twice.

When you fail, there are 2 ways to react. The first one is to go to your bedroom, lock the door, cry listening to a Linkin Park song and never leave anymore. The second one is to go to your bedroom, cry, think about it and try again. Tennis legend Roger Federer lost his first competition game 0/6 0/6. He obviously dried his tears and tried again until he had the career everyone knows about.

Failure or not, it’s been a while since I haven’t cried.

When I fail at something I try to find a lesson to learn, even a small one. It’s very important to me. If I can learn something, I can’t consider it a total failure. Writing about it helps me a lot. Publishing my notes as blog posts help me even more. It turns the lesson learned into something real. People can read about it, they can judge me if they want, and they can learn from it. That’s the first part of what I call positive failure.

Positive failure is about having a positive state of mind after you failed. It’s critical if you want to start again from a solid ground. The lesson you’ve learned is part of what makes your ground much stronger and better. Positive failure is not playing the ostrich policy. It’s not about rejecting your failure on someone else,

It didn’t work, but everything’s alright and I did nothing wrong. It’s someone else / my competitor / my teachers / the economics fault.

There’s one reason why I both love and hate tennis so much: It’s mentally the hardest sport ever.

When playing, you’re alone on the court against 3: your opponent, the ball and yourself. Defeat is all your fault, victory is all yours too. Team sports like soccer don’t have this personal responsibility in victory or failure. You can always hide your poor performance behind the team, it makes losing much more easier.

Losing a tennis game is about facing your failure naked. Of course, you can try the ostrich policy. You can blame the weather, the court, your hard day, but in the end, it’s all about you losing to your opponent. It forces you to adopt a positive failure state of mind if you don’t want to keep playing.

Positive failure is saying:

OK, we’ve screwed up. We’re obviously knee deep in the shit because of this and that. There was this, it’s the past and we’re now ready to start over, here’s what we’re gonna do.

It’s just a question of being honest with yourself and others.

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