*If you’ve just started reading this post I recommend you start with part one. I’m working through the thoughts and notes I first put there.  Read the first post HERE and read the second post HERE This is part THREE of the series. FAIL

When I talk about failing, I'm not talking about failing as a person. Let's just get this out there. We all screw up and make mistakes, we can't hide from that. I'm talking about the type of failing where you go out on the ledge and risk something. You try something because you think it might be worth trying and in the end it fails.

"You tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try" Homer J. Simpson

Last post I said that I think the biggest struggle in these four steps that people have is the first one: Trying. People get all caught up on just trying something that they never do it. If trying is the struggle, it's all because they have a fear of failing. People fear failure. We live in a cultural that has a 'failure isn't an option' attitude. Why?

Failing gives you a new way to learn how NOT to do something (thank you Edison). Failing gives you a chance to evaluate what worked and what didn't. Failing gives you an opportunity to say you've tried something. Failing helps you see what you're made of.

"That's how you become great, man. Hang your balls out there!" The Copy Store Clerk from Jerry Maguire

I've failed at a lot of things, to name a few:

  • Grade 10 Math, Science and Social Studies - real proud of that one ;)
  • My first year college GPA was 1.98 (I told you I sucked at school)
  • I have worked with several real estate agents in the past where ideas did not pan out as planned.
  • Sometimes I look at my Canucks videos as failures because I never won anything. My goal was to be on Hockey Night in Canada and I gave up on it.
  • I tried numerous attempts for a Young Adults program over 3 years and none of them stuck.
  • Various ads and marketing attempts with different clients that we both failed on.
  • BBA Productions. My friend and I have bombed on that one.
  • My movie short I filmed. I was so green, but I know I could have done a lot better.
  • My lesson series on the Matrix when I was youth pastoring stunk big time.
  • And many more...

Those are just a few. Some I've actually never been willing to admit to myself were failures until I looked at this whole process.

Failing encourages me in an odd way. Turning from disappoint and rejection to a new sense of hope and expectation, I have been able to see that failure isn't meant to harm or discourage me, it's meant for me to learn. Failure is an option and an expectation. Failure creates opportunities for me to stand up and try something again. It gives me a chance to show the world I am capable of falling on my face and picking myself back up again.

What have you failed at lately?

Matthew A. Hawkins

PS. I read this yesterday and thought it was a great story of failure leading to success: READ IT HERE