Your Most Humiliating Failures—Revealed if You Dare

Tony Robbins has “failed.”

iStock 000011464932XSmall 300x210After only two episodes, his TV show that I was so excited about has been canceled—and the premiere was one of NBC’s biggest debut bombs ever.  And to add insult to injury, his time slot will be filled by the loathable Guy Fieri and the important Minute to Win It.

But if you’ve read what I’ve written about getting over your fear of failure, then you should know why I put “failed” in quotes.  It’s because I look at the whole concept differently than many others, and I think you should, too.

You should be proud of failing

I’m going to suggest something here that might seem strange: You should be proud of your failure.  Own it, admit it, brag about it.

Why? Because the fact that you “failed” means you attempted something where you could fail.  It’s pretty tough to fail at sitting on the couch, watching TV, or making sure you do whatever everyone else does.  (Hint: that’s why everyone does it.)

History’s most prolific failures

People who succeed more than others do so because they’re willing to fail more than others.  Because failing is absolutely essential if you want to do anything great.  You’ve heard the stories, I’m sure.

  • Thomas Edison failed either 1,000 or 10,000 times to invent the light bulb, depending on which source you trust.  But he didn’t look at it as failure.  Edison said, “I have not failed.  I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
  • Abraham Lincoln endured a string of political failures and personal tragedies on his way to becoming one of the greatest Presidents ever.  (He had some successes mixed in, which many versions of the story leave out, but for me, that only strengthens the message that success and failure go hand in hand.)
  • My favorite example is that of Colonel Sanders, of Kentucky Fried Chicken fame.  (Forget about Kentucky Fried Cruelty for a second.)  Supposedly, Colonel Sanders knocked on 1,009 doors before he finally convinced someone to buy his chicken recipe.  Not just failure, but rejection.  And every time he got a door slammed in his face, he had to go home and convince himself that the next one would be different.  He did just that, and eventually he got what he wanted.

It starts with embracing it

When you can accept failure, embrace it even, it goes from being a big, dark, scary cloud that paralyzes you to becoming a lever you can use.  It’s painful, there’s no denying that.  What matters is how you use that pain.

If that pain means “I’ll never try again,” that’s no good.  Instead, you want that pain to motivate you to try again, this time with additional knowledge experience, in order to make it go away.

It begins with admitting your failures.  People walk around keeping their failures a secret from everybody, like they’re something to be embarrassed about.

Get over that.  Speak publicly about them, take responsibility for them, and once they’re out there, they don’t seem to matter so much.  It’s liberating and empowering.

So here goes nothing: Seven of my biggest failures, in no particular order, some of which I’ve shared before and some of which I haven’t.

  1. When I was applying for colleges, I thought I was Ivy League material.  (I’d had a Yale sweatshirt since I was a little kid and always thought I’d go there.)  Of the four or five that I applied to, all thought differently.  Worse, I got almost all the rejection letters on the same day when I returned home from vacation to a full mailbox of suck.
  2. The school I went to instead was Boston College.  I spent one semester there and failed to fit in, make friends, or be happy.  So I came home for a semester before going back to college.
  3. I failed five times to qualify for the Boston marathon, and that’s if you only count the marathons that I ran (there were several aborted training programs).  The first was the biggest failure of them all, when I missed my goal time by an hour and forty-two minutes.
  4. I’ve failed every time I’ve tried to quit drinking coffee.
  5. I failed the first time I tried to go vegetarian.
  6. I was rejected twice when I asked girls to Homecoming, freshman and sophomore years.
  7. I was rejected after the only two serious, post-college job interviews I went on (a fact that I’m endlessly thankful for today).

No excuses.

Now it’s your turn

I invite you to share your failures here.  Just do it.  Even better, share them on your own blog, your Facebook, or your Twitter.

I feel pretty good right now.  When you own your failures, I think you will too.

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Comments

  1. As a high school freshman, I tried out for the swim team. I failed miserably (almost drowned myself by accident) despite my very best and hardest efforts and didn’t make the team. I had put it all out there and failed. That failure made me realize swimming wasn’t my sport and fueled my desire to become a better tennis player and a runner. Just completed the Boston Marathon this past year. Failure is definitely something you can learn from though. After all, I’m still talking about a freshman year fail, which happened over 10 years ago!

  2. Hi Matt,

    Great post! I’m SOOOO mad at NBC for canceling Tony’s show. Finally we had something USEFUL and EDUCATIONAL to watch on television and they won’t just finish out the remaining 4 episodes? I saw it on his Twitter yesterday and just couldn’t believe it.

    And to think that NBC feels that “Minute to Win It” is a better fill for that time slot. I feel like it’s the Conan/Jay fiasco all over again.

    A failure for me was aiming to run a full marathon this year. I’d done 5 halves in past years and this year I wanted to do the full, but after a couple of 14 mile training runs my knees were killing me and I threw in the towel because there was no enjoyment in it for me – I’d started to dread every run by that point. But admitting it to all of my blog readers who’d been following along was REALLY hard to do and I’d felt that I’d let them down.

    BTW – when I was in high school, I carried around a Boston College brochure because I wanted to go there very badly! :)

    Have a great weekend!

  3. Hmm…I guess I’m going to go with still not working in a job in my field 4 years after graduation? Not sure I want to, but it was hard to accept not finding one.

  4. Oh der, I meant Boston University! Good thing I didn’t apply, ha ha! ;)

  5. Three times I have trained for a marathon- and three times I have failed to even get to the starting line. I’ll keep trying though!! :)

  6. I fancy myself a writer, and I fail on a weekly basis when rejection letters arrive from journals to which I’ve submitted my short stories. And yet my stack of rejections (all of which I save in a folder) make me feel more like a writer, not less. I know it’s just a matter of time (and hard work) until the acceptances begin to tip the scale.

    I also missed my unofficial goal for my first marathon this past February by 13 minutes. I got bronchitis a few weeks before the race and blamed it on that, but really I think I was afraid to run too fast – afraid I would hurt myself, or burn out too early, or be in too much pain. Looking back, I know I could have done better – it was my fear that held me back. But now I know what I’m capable of, and I’ll be pushing myself harder at my next marathon for sure.

    • Rejection letters are kind of awesome. I have a rejection email from the New Yorker. If you really want your writing out there, publish it yourself– don’t go on the judgments of those big wigs at the top of publishing companies :)

  7. Tyler Yell says:

    I have been following this blog since mid 2009, this is one of your best posts yet, Matt. Thank you!!!

    *I also failed at getting into my top colleges. I then found my amazing wife at the college I “settled” for.
    * I fail at being the best husband I know my wife deserves.
    * I fail at doing more than paid for at work and being the man I am, I feel that I owe my family and my boss more than that.
    *I fail at taking initiative in life when someone needs help or when I need help but am unable to admit it.
    * I fail at only thinking of the facts in a situation and instead allow my head to be filled with subjective thoughts that are detrimental to the successful outcome that is best for everyone involved.
    * I fail at self-control of emotions when something doesn’t go my way or is an annoyance.

    Wow, that felt good. Thank you, Matt. You’re the best.

  8. That takes some guts to admit your failures for the whole blogosphere, but you’re right. Failure is part of life and part of succeeding.
    My failures:
    1) I started a blog with no knowledge about blogging or what I really wanted to do with it, so I’m really not happy with how it’s working out. So I’m learning more about blogging and I’m planning to revamp soon.
    2) Every time I try to start strength training regularly, I fail. I’m in the midst of yet another attempt, and hopefully this one will stick. Ditto with running.
    3) I’ve gotten plenty of rejection letters from magazines for articles I’ve submitted.
    4) For the life of me, I can’t keep my apartment tidy.

    And those are only a few, but the important thing is, I have more successes than this. Either that or I notice the successes more than I notice the failures.

  9. Kelsey H says:

    sometimes when i fail, i think of all the FAIL posters/pictures that have come out and how funny if i had one of those for every huge fail in my life. i think the failing experience makes each victory that much sweeter.

    1) i was WAITLISTED for graduate school at my alma mater. and this was a hail mary, i had only applied to this school. are you serious? yes, i eventually got in at probably the last possible second, but this “failure” in my eyes i believe has taught me to appreciate this opportunity even more when i start this fall:)
    2) i got a D- in a history class in undergrad. i didn’t even try.
    3) in college, i quit cheerleading because i was getting too stressed out. i hate quitting things.
    4) i had a chicken nugget last night and i can’t remember the last time i ate chicken. yep.
    5) i fail at being a good friend a lot. i’m more concerned with my own problems than everyone else’s.

  10. Thanks for the good article and for others sharing their “failures”. I can relate to a lot of these, so it’s really helpful to see that someone else has experienced the same things. Makes me feel less guilty for a second! I have wanted to do a marathon for years, but have never done a whole one. Also struggle to stop drinking coffee! (However I made it all week this week w/o a cup!)Have failed at my first (& 2nd) attempt at vegetarianism as well. It is a shame that Tony’s show was canceled. :( I kind of expected it though, since the majority of show’s on tv are geared toward more mindless humor and that’s what gets the ratings. Crazy. I hope we get to watch them online somewhere.

  11. Goodness, I believe I’d nearly have to write a novel but here is the one that bothers me the most. I had the opportunity to have (and did have) the best job in the world. I was a California highway patrol officer. I made it through 27 weeks of hell at the academy (which was harder then USMC boot camp. Another endeavor I also consider a failure because it didn’t last 20 years), became an officer and was in the field a short time before I resigned. I knew towards the end of the academy that it wasn’t for me but I hung on for awhile in hopes that that would change. It didn’t. I don’t regret my decision for resigning because I know it wasn’t the job for me. I regret even trying.

  12. This is an excellent post. Thank you.

    The biggest failure I struggle with is matching up the image of how I “thought” my life was going to be, and how it is turning out in reality. I thought I would be married and have children by my late-twenties, but instead I have pursued a career and other things. Not that I regret anything, but the ideal and real can be very different and occasionally lead to feelings of “failure”!

  13. A mailbox full of suck is my favorite quote today. And maybe even for tomorrow but we’ll see how Saturday shapes up.

    *University for sure. Thought I was beyond smart and applied everywhere. Turns out I was beyond poor and couldn’t afford to go fancy anyway.

    *Failed at quitting smoking a pack a day for 10 years, maybe 25 + times. Didn’t fail once :)

    *Failed losing weight for 20 years, maybe 30+ times. Didn’t fail once :)

    *Failed at marathon training after an ITB injury. Trained for a triathlon instead and liked it better. Found my mojo with it.

    I am now going to head to the post office and cross my fingers.

  14. Great post! I have been thinking about my failures and how they have made me into the person I am today. My most recent failure(s) have been regarding jobs: quit mine June 2009 to start a new career path, graduated with a 2nd bachelor’s in December 2009, was told I would “definitely get a job”, received 2 interviews after applying for about 100, and got rejected for both. And being that I am looking for a teaching job and schools go back in a week, looks like I will be without a job that I want. BUT, I just got an offer yesterday for a part-time job that sounds like it will be perfect if it works out or if I find what I have really been looking for. Failures almost always lead up to some sort of success, in my opinion!

  15. I totally agree that getting over the fear of failure and trying something new is so important. Sometimes it’s hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I graduated college 6 years ago and I have failed to find a job I like, and the job I have is a dead end administrative assistant position that I hate. Can’t see the light at the end of that one, but I’m getting over my fear of rejection and have started applying for other jobs. I got into 5 colleges in England to get my MA, was planning on going to one, and failed to summon the courage to actually go. I chose a relationship with a loser boyfriend instead (epic fail). I went back to college to get my MA in English AGAIN at home and I failed to complete the program because I realized I didn’t love (or even like) being back in school. I’m glad I tried, because I would have always wondered about it if I hadn’t made the attempt.

    As far as Tony’s show goes – I’m personally glad it was cancelled…I mean, how staged is it (episode 2) that he turned that couple’s life around by offering them jobs! That dude spit on the concrete and was totally underqualified for the restaurant position he was offered, but he got it because he was on the show. Total drivel. sorry, I just get worked up about that.

    • Lindsay, agreed that Tony’s second episode wasn’t very good. I thought the exact same thing, that it was pretty lame that he basically got them jobs. I wish the show would have focused more on the psychological aspect of the changes they had to make. Still, I wish it weren’t canceled, I liked it better than anything else on TV.

      Thanks for being brave and admitting your failures! Sounds kinda like me… not happy with post-college jobs, not at that happy about grad school either. Good luck finding what it is that lights you up :)

  16. Thanks for the inspiration… I’ll be posting a list of my failures soon :)

  17. Sean from Tampa says:

    Great article and responses!

    I have many failures, however these are the ones I am working on correcting.

    * Failure to be a great father to my young children as my father was to me. I sometimes lack the patience and understanding my father had towards me. I am getting better though :-)

    * Failure to keep a handle on my debt. I struggled after my father died of a brain tumor and I allowed myself to get deep into toxic debt. Now after years of being in debt, I will be free of toxic debt in a few months :-)

    Sean

  18. I was the first person to ever, ever be cut from the volleyball team at my very small high school. And I have no proof that anyone has been cut since me.

  19. I don’t find my failures humiliating. Every time I feel like I’ve failed, I think of Stephen King. He received rejections from publishers for years (literally, years) and he kept on writing anyway… and now he’s one of the most published authors in history.

    However, it really skeeves me that I haven’t been able to a) pay off my credit card debt (I do feel lucky to have kept my job through the economic slump, though), b) maintain a lower body weight, c) cook at home on a regular basis. Those aren’t spectacular fails, just little, everyday fails that make me feel like I’m not living my ultimate life.

    I have this sneaky feeling that those “failures” are all related. So I decided to train for a marathon to prove that I’ve got the wherewithal to target and achieve tough, long-term goals.

  20. My “Failures” Include:

    1) My PhD Qualifying Exam (no chance for repeat, great thing to happen to me much happier now with a great job)

    2) Didn’t make the cut for my Middle School Basketball Team (made it in 8th grade, after lots of practice only to break my ankle)

    3) Went to Senior Prom with a friend, several rejected offers (sad as a girl…but that’s a part of growing up)

    4) On my oath to stay single my freshman year of college (turned into a happy marriage!)

  21. Hi there-I will lurk no more. Jess (your first commenter) told me I needed to read this post, simply because of some of my own personal recently blogged about failures.
    1. My freshman year of HS I tried out for the basketball team. I gave it EVERYTHING I had and was cut. It was devistating to me but I got over it.
    2. I failed out of college. Twice. I, like you, thought I knew what I wanted from a college. The first school I went to, I went to for ALL the wrong reasons. I played soccer for 2 years(which I am very grateful for) but I just couldn’t get it together. I went home with my tail between my legs and went to Community College to get my grades up (Which i did-I graudated with honors) then I went on to another 4 year university (again for the wrong reasons) and played soccer for a year…and again, failed out.
    However,I ended up going to UMass after taking 2 years off to “think and grow” and ended up graduating Magna Cum Laude.
    My mom hates when I tell people that I failed out of college but I think it just shows who I am–I could have given up but I didn’t.
    3. My first true love was my college boyfriend (at failed college number 2) I feel like I completely failed at making that relationship work because I expected too much from him. I’m still heartbroken by it, even though Im’ MUCH HAPPIER in my relationship now, but it was still a failure that, to this day, I look at as a learning experience.

    Thank you for this post and for reminding us all that failure is also success.

  22. I love this post b/c it is really true. I’m so afraid of failing, but when I do, I learn from it. I tried out for the swim team like the first commenter and didn’t make it. They were pretty much taking everyone, but they didn’t want me. It totally fueled my desire to learn how to freestyle properly, and now I’m training for a half ironman in September. It is funny how things change!

  23. After spending 5 weeks in Europe last summer, I gained 8-10 lbs. I vowed to lose it within a couple months of getting home…that was 11 months ago, and I have failed to lose it. It may not seem like much, but on a small frame such as mine, it’s fairly dramatic, and it has done a number on my knees. I’m going to have to sit out this year’s marathon thanks to persistent knee injury, and that’s really getting me down.

  24. What a great subject! I really need to get a handle on my most recent major failure:

    – A local state university MA program rejected me. It’s not that awesome of a school, so it was a major punch in the face and ego. It made me realize that I probably don’t want to go back to grad school right now though.
    – Also, less major but still annoying is that I fail repeatedly at blogging. I totally forget!

    I feel much lighter. I’ve been holding on to the rejection failure quite a bit. Thanks for reminding me to let it go without shame.

  25. 1. I started graduate school in 2005 working on my M.S. in Molecular Biology and completed all my classwork but have yet to write to a thesis. I’ve switched projects and will be finished at the end of Fall Semester 2010 (Fingers Crossed).

    2. I got an F the first time I took Organic Chemistry II.

    3. I went to Europe during the 2002-2003 academic year and racked up some debt traveling. I have yet to pay off this credit card debt.

    4. I’ve tried to quit drinking diet soda about 5 times. No success yet.

    Thank you for this opportunity. I feel like a small weight has been lifted from my shoulders just getting some of these off my chest. Now it’s time to get that thesis done.

    Great post!

  26. Remember that 40 Day Dairy-Free Challenge? Yea, I failed that. I’ve also failed in my running lately from being lazy throughout the summer. It’s really bumming me out from both not reaching my goals and not getting those endorphin rushes that I love.

  27. Well, in all honesty I’m not as bummed about Tony Robbins cancellation as you are; I’m no Minute To Win It fan, but Tony didn’t do much for me either. Now if only they’d fill that time slot with a new season of Heroes, then they’d be on to something…

    This Summer I failed at writing a cookbook. I mean, I wrote a good portion of it. I even recipe tested a bit. But as soon as I sent out the proposals and started getting the rejection letters, I felt like a huge failure. Instead, I try to look at the experience as a positive one. I realized that what I was trying to do definitely wasn’t for me, or at least not the way it’s going to happen if it ever does. And I still have everything I worked on unpublished if I ever need it. So maybe I failed, but I came out knowing myself a little better.

  28. Ha – it’s funny you should have just posted this. I JUST posted a fail on my blog.

    http://themommybowl.com/2010/08/lacto-ferment-fail/

    I figure we all learn from failures, right?

  29. Hmm. Well, okay: I failed to choose good husbands three times. (the fourth was a keeper, though.) I have twice blown up at sprint triathlons because my brakes were on or my tire was rubbing, and I didn’t check. I failed to finish the novel I’ve started, after a very promising start. I’ve failed to finish two phD programs, and I have yet to live up to the promise of my ability and talent in terms of an actual, liveable salary. Boston? Don’t make me laugh. I’m worried about making teh 5:30 cutoff at the LV marathon in December.

  30. I recently had something of an epiphany on this very topic at around mile 11 of a 14 mile run the other day. It was a tough run, and I was in pain, and it occurred to me that I was suffering over it – I was associating the fact that I was in pain, with failure. Whoa! That’s kinda arbitrary, and not very helpful, either. Full story here – http://tinyurl.com/2u3zqxr

  31. I have failed at almost everything I tried….but I’ve also succeeded later in many of those things. Sometimes it takes failure to motivate you, or teach you how to succeed.

  32. I did the same thing in college. After a hard, homesick first semester, I took a semester off before I went back.

    I’ve also failed giving up soda about 100 times!

  33. OMG, I’ve failed at so many things. But the thing is, if you learn from your failures, then you are ahead of the game the next time you try. You actually can fail your way to success. If you aren’t failing at least some of the time, then you aren’t trying hard enough! :-)

    BTW, love your site. I am a recent jogger and a very recent vegetarian. I had Lap-Band weight loss surgery six months ago, and I’ve lost 105 lbs so far. Running has a lot to do with my success so far. But believe me, I’ve failed at losing weight so many times, it’s scary. But it makes me appreciate the success I’m having now. To me, running and a vegetarian diet are key components to healthy, sustainable weight loss.

  34. I failed at my first marathon attempt. This past February I was supposed to run my first marathon in Myrtle Beach, SC. It was canceled due to snow. I scheduled a back-up a few weeks later…. I was done at mile 16. I could go no further. I was devastated and still wonder what would have happened if MB was not canceled. I decided to put the marathon on hold until 2011. I will run on eventually!

  35. Failure is critical.

    I believe failure is necessary a few times in our life because it stops getting complacent and arrogant.

    Not very popular I know but President Richard Nixon on leaving the White House said:

    “Only if you have been in the deepest valley, can you ever know how magnificent it is to be on the highest mountain.”

    I am fortunate enough to have been blessed with a natural ability to sell. In my early twenties I lived all over the UK and mainly in London. Working in commission only sales. Some people were terrified by that but I loved the challenge.

    London at that time was an amazing place for sales people. Having had enough of your boss you could resign on Friday and get another commission only sales job by the following Tuesday.

    I remember one job. I was selling advertising on maps on the London Underground. I had a great first five weeks and then the six weeks I struggled.

    They sent me out to Bond St as we had some spots left there. When I got back to the office a few hours later there was already a guy sat at my desk!!!

    I was called in and fired.

    This was a major shock for me at the ripe old age of 22. Fired from a sales job for not producing. This had never happened to me before.

    It was then I realised I needed more in my armoury and started reading lots of books by sales guys and the likes of Anthony Robbins. I set out on a path of learning and developing. Building on my natural skills, whereas in the past I relied on my natural talent.

    Fast forward twelve years and I am now responsible for over 50 people and multi million dollar markets. I am about to take up a new role based in the USA, covering everything West of Texas.

    Maybe…if I did not experience that failure..I would still be working these commission only jobs in London….

  36. Interesting post! My first response though was that, thanks largely in part to recipes on your blog, I felt very successful in completing my half marathon in May. Thank you!

  37. I have definitely failed:

    -This year I applied for post docs…didn’t get offered one! Then my top choice had their top choice drop out, and offered it to me (I guess I was second choice…or their second choice was unavailable…). One week into the position, I sometimes wonder if they are sorry they don’t have their #1 (or perhaps #2) choice for post doc. But I love the job so I try not to dwell.

    -Nearly two years ago I started running and lost about 10 lbs. I was truly happy with my body. (Ok I would have like some more toning in my arms.) I vowed never to gain it back. I thought only stupid people would allow themselves to gain back weight. Here I am today, back at that original weight, vowing to lose it and keep it off yet again.

    -I put together a training schedule for my upcoming half (#3). It’s 10/24. Or 78 days away. I only stuck to it 100% the first week. Am I just being “flexible” or am I failing to stick to my goal?

    But failures are important teaching tools. For every “failure” I have had numerous successes. And none of my failures are so epic that they cannot also serve as important lessons and reminders of my limits as a human.

  38. Matt, what a great post. One of my biggest “failures” was deciding to write the great american novel (of the “chick lit” variety) back in 2001. At 500 pages, it sucked. So I rewrote it again and again over the following three years. It never got published. But remember what Malcolm Gladwell said in the Outliers about a person needing to log in 10,000 hours to become an expert at something? Well, along the way I learned how to write. And now, building that skill is allowing me to write a non-fiction book with flair. :)

  39. Great post Matt!

    My “Failures”:
    1. To get into an ivy league college.
    2. To stick to a healthy diet.
    3. To stay within the monthly budget.
    4. I failed the first time I trained to run a half marathon.
    5. Fail to complete tasks on time, I tend to procrastinate.

  40. My biggest failures:

    1. Going $20K in credit card debt after trying for years to make an in-home business work.

    2. Sticking to any kind of regular exercise plan. Ever.

    3. Gaining 25 pounds after getting married and being completely unmotivated to do what it’ll take to lose it.

  41. Hi Matt,

    Thanks for this. I’m a first year university student, almost-vegan yogi and runner.

    This week I massively failed my economics term test worth 25% of my mark for the year, which jeopardizes my chance of passing the class. Econ is simply very difficult for me and the class was very badly taught and structured. I took it because it is somewhat related to what I want to major in. It was a challenge, and even though the test didn’t reflect it, I have learned a lot. But I burnt out and crashed and burned. My first major failure.

    This post helps a lot.

  42. - I failed at graduating my law exam with the grade I wanted (I still got a really good grade, though)
    – I failed at becoming an adult for a really long time
    – I failed at becoming more independent and self-reliant and I failed at permanently leaving my parents’ place for a really long time
    – I failed at having a spiritual awakening earlier (ok, I didn’t try so does this technically count as a failure?)
    – I failed at staying together with my last boyfriend until the end of my legal clerkship (bad idea in the first place)
    – I failed at getting my friend with benefit to commit to a relationship with me and I failed at convincing him that I’m the most wonderful woman for him ever (jk)
    – I failed at already having a successful career and the authority I would like to have
    – I failed at starting to work earlier
    – I failed at completing my PhD thesis within 2 years
    – I failed at completing my first novel (many times)
    – I failed at playing in a band
    – I failed at sticking with a sport long enough to actually master it
    – I failed at making up my mind many, many times
    – I failed at defending my own interests many, many times
    – I failed at being punctual too many times to count
    – I sometimes failed at understanding maths and physics in high school
    – I failed at maintaining my Spanish language skills after living there for a year
    – I sometimes failed in PE in high school
    – I failed at giving up coffee every time I tried (I’ve found the solution: I’ll stop trying)
    – I failed at attending a festival for many years in a row
    – I failed at taking advantage of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity because someone got me stoned and I fell asleep :D
    – I failed at spending an exchange year in Australia
    – I failed at living a bohemian lifestyle like I wanted to
    – I failed at finding my Sartre
    – I failed at being accepted after my last job interview
    – I failed at taking care of issues right away and I failed at not procrastinating many times
    – I failed at not making an idiot of myself many times
    – I failed at feeling “cool” many times
    – I failed at learning to speak English without an accent
    – I failed at daring to do things many times
    – I failed at reading a number of e-mails I was afraid to read
    – I failed at falling in love with guys who have an interest in me
    – I failed at not falling in love with unapproachable guys (sigh!)
    – I failed at meeting “The One”
    – I failed at fitting in in high school and elsewhere
    – I failed at impressing people with my song writing abilities
    – I failed at figuring out who I was for a really long time
    – I failed at having a better grip on my finances
    – I failed at doing more with my creativity
    – I failed at keeping my room tidy many, many times
    – I failed at doing small talk and being sociable many times
    – I failed at dying very young (good thing!)

    OH…and I oftentimes failed at coming up with realistic goals! :D

Trackbacks

  1. [...] by No Meat Athlete, here are almost all of the times I failed that have helped me become such an ongoing success (no, [...]

  2. [...] of posts, like I did yesterday, that reminded me that failure is how we teach ourselves (one, two, three). So a day like yesterday where I was willing to just go for it, even if it was a flop, is [...]

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