Failures, repeated failures, are finger posts on the road to achievement. One fails forward towards success.
Do we fail forward towards success? Intuitively that sounds completely wrong.
If you are failing then you must be doing something wrong, right? Not necessarily. What if you are failing because each time you are trying to push yourself past whatever you had accomplished previously?
After my biggest failure in life, I walked around for the better part of a year and a half in shell shock. Trying to make sense of what had happened and trying to understand what options were at my disposal going forward.
During this period, I started becoming much more aware of the failures that all of my heroes had gone through. Muhammad Ali losing his title by being a conscientious objector, Edison burning through thousands of lightbulbs before he found one that worked, da Vinci becoming obsessed with building flying machines (that did not work until Orvil and Wilbur Wright proved his theory of bat wings being the correct arched wing solution, hundreds of years later) Steve Jobs being forced out of Apple, and so on.
I think that failure is evidence that you tried to attempt something that was bigger than what you had taken on before. There is no shame in failure. That is a concept. There is a shame in failing but not learning the lesson from the failure. That would absolutely be a shame.
Recognizing the lesson that comes with the failure, allows you to stand on the shoulders of the previous mistake and make different choices. Hopefully those choices are more educated and they give way to a newfound success.
Allowing yourself the space to be less than perfect is perhaps the greatest tool that comes from this perspective. Being less than perfect allows the opportunity to move ever closer towards perfection which is an absolute and unattainable anyway.
I think life is about going out and giving it everything you’ve got, without fear of failure or regret. At some point you need to recognize that you are all that you have and if you are not giving yourself all that you can and if you are not growing as aptly as you may, you are ultimately letting yourself down in the process.