I asked Jenn to record an interview Oprah had with J.K. Rowling last week. I finally got around to watching it tonight, and I was super impressed with J.K. Rowling. If there’s one thing I know for sure, it’s that all of my readers watch Oprah – so there’s no need to repeat what you’ve already heard, but J.K.’s thoughts on failure really struck a chord with me. I have this insane urge to succeed, and it’s not because of fight – it’s because of fear. I am deathly afraid of people finding out what I fear is true of myself – that I may fail. This might be the reason why I haven’t finished any of the writing projects I’ve started. It might be the reason why I haven’t taken many chances in my life. I usually take the “failure is not an option” approach, which is fine, unless your fear of failure has everything to do with other’s perception of yourself.

J.K. said something in the interview about failure that I thought was really great:

“It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all – in which case, you fail by default.”

I am really trying to deal with my fear of failure. I don’t want it to prevent me from trying something, even if it means I’ll likely fall flat on my face doing so. I want to tame this beast for myself and for my children. They need to know that they are only bound by their ambition. What if everyone lived this way? What if that little idea you have…the one that won’t go away. What if that idea is that one that frees you from your fear of failure, even if it does so by causing you to fail. I think I’m ready. At least I hope I am. You?

4 thoughts on “Failure

  1. I tend to live by the mantra “failure is probably the outcome” and so far it seems to be working out good for me. Being a sales person, I know you have heard at some point, “under-promise, over-deliver”. This is the same theory, if you believe that failure is probably the outcome, any positive result is met with a much more joyous appreciation of said outcome. I have found in life you have to take chances, you have to taktake that leap of faith, otherwise you never know what you are leaving out on the table. I would love to say that I have never failed, but the reality is by failing you live and learn, which means you are less likely to fail next time…

  2. hey another way of facing your fear of failure is being forced to. it worked for me. there was no other way to go but off the cliff. starting my business was my fear of failure. When being tormented by a drug addicted husband got to be too much and when he started to torment my Son, it was time. I had to take the leap and get the hell out and go forward. That meant taking that little voice and doing what it said to do with no looking back. After 3 years of hell, more paper work than anyone in a lifetime should ever have to do, court battles and finally freedom, the success, peace & comfort from the divorce made starting my business a walk in the park and a no other option! Plus having to support a household completely on my own was a huge motivation! moral of the story is once you have fought the biggest battle of your life and succeeded, fear of failure is no longer a fear or an option when you have a 30 year mortgage with 20 more years to go! now fear of foreclosure is another story!

  3. P.S.
    the only reason for any of my success, completely goes to the glory of God who caught me when i jumped and has never let me go!
    read the entire book of Joshua for inspiration to succeed.
    and words to live by are:
    Psalm 37:5-6
    5 Commit your way to the LORD;
    trust in him and he will do this:
    6 He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn,
    the justice of your cause like the noonday sun.

    all i did was have faith, he did the rest…. :)

  4. dude.. I hear you 100%. fear of failure.. or jus fear in general has crippled me a lot over my life and it sucks because then not only are you bound by the fear then you are dealing the “i wonder what would have happened if I tried” thoughts. Its a vicious cycle that I still struggle with, and that i am trying to break the cycle of.

    Thanks for your honesty…

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