Sayings I Don’t Like: Failure is not an Option.

24 Feb

“Failure is not an option.”

Let me ask you this, in any endeavor run with good faith, is there any reason why one would choose to fail?  I guess there are situations where failure is an option, but the norm is that we do things to succeed.   It’s human nature.     So part of the reason I hate this saying is that I find it to be nonsense.   Failure sometimes is mandatory–after all, certain parts of any plan will fail, and then the planners will change things as needed.  That’s the normal process for things.   Also all things, given enough time, eventually fail.

I also loathe this saying because it’s the kind of t-shirt message that really means nothing.   It sounds like a positive bit of pappy advice, but what it hides is not quite so positive:  perfectionism.

Perfectionists believe that failure is not an option, and perfectionists are a stressed out and unhappy lot.   Failure being not an option does not allow people to take risks or to change anything.    It’s the sergeant’s bark to get you back in line.  Can you imagine telling some baby learning to walk that failure is not an option, so they either need to walk correctly or to sit and do nothing?   To walk, one must fall down over and over and over again, learning each time.

Well I’m here to tell you that failure is and will always be an option.    You can fail at anything, and you can choose to fail at anything.    I invite you to have a great big wonderful messy failure.  To choose to make one.   Fall on your face today, and live to laugh about it.

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