Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm-
It is extremely difficult to discuss failure, especially for someone like myself.
Take a look around this morning – A lot of folks like to boast about their weekend triumphs. Raising my hand, I fully admit that I more comfortable talking about where I excel, rather than identifying any potential weaknesses I may have. Primarily – Navigation and attention to the provided cue sheets. Luckily these guys helped me out a bit:
150+ miles on the harshest of open roads is relatively “easy“. Failure on the other hand, is a painful and powerful experience. It’s not easy getting lost around Waverly, Nebraska. Making the conscious decision to swallow my pride and limp back to the starting point – Off course. However, being open and accepting of the moment allowed me to build an even stronger foundation, for the next time out – Omaha Jackrabbit!
In the moment, it may not seem like it, although each time we encounter a setback during a ride or “whatever” in life … We are that much closer to doing it right the next go around.
I would like to thank my friend Scott for sharing his inspiring photos from Saturday – Thank You! For more pics of the Gravel Worlds, please click HERE.
Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavour-
Search “self-help” this morning using your WordPress reader, and you are likely to find a billion posts listed under “self-esteem.” Let’s be fully open and honest – The sole purpose of these posts is to not only tell you why your self-esteem is suffering, but rather to guide your delicate heart to more of it.
Why is this so?
Self esteem is considered the pinnacle of true individual success. How can we possibly get ahead of the next person in life, unless we intimately believe we are perfect, and perfectly awesome!
In order to be perfectly awesome? We live in quiet terror of making mistakes in life, and we feel utterly devastated when we do. Our defense mechanism is to refocus our attention on the “things” we do well …
Stroking our own ego, relentlessly until our hearts forget this horrible episode of not being “awesome” and moving on to “something” more satisfying.
How does this relate to yoga practice, cycling, running and whatever else?
It’s important to understand, when I discuss self-compassion during a post … I’m discussion what self-compassion is not. Some folks like to think self-compassion is giving yourself a break, taking it easy. In essence self-compassion is simply accepting responsibility for, YOU. The difference lies not in where we end up during a flow of poses (the flow of life), but in how we process the ups and downs of the journey, our path in life.
Self-compassion is a willingness to look at our own mistakes and shortcomings with kindness and understanding – To err, is indeed human.
The “trick” in life is to allow ourselves to make mistakes without feeling humiliated … Tune in and take notice of your abilities, your actions, and evaluate what needs to be done “differently” next time around.
Don’t be satisfied with stories, how things have gone with others. Unfold your own myth-
Modern society has taught us that we have either “winners” or “losers.” How often have you witnessed a teacher, yoga instructor, life coach, personal trainer and dare I mention parents … teaching us how to approach failure, how to accept loosing as part of life? We often spend more time focusing on the less important lesson – Winning, succeeding at all costs, no matter what the consequences and outcome(s) may be.
People who fail repeatedly develop persistence in the face of difficulties and only those folks with an extensive history of failure could survive the difficulties that they endure during their lives. Such dogged persistence is not a universal trait we share. If it were, everyone would be in shape (whatever this means), trim, happy, healthy, super flexible during yoga class, 14 minute 5k time etc.
Success, only teaches us to keep on doing the same thing … Failure teaches us to adapt and change, to overcome. Speaking of overcoming obstacles … Gravel Worlds Premier 2013
The practical power of failure is not restricted to work, school and getting the sweetest parking spot at Whole Foods. Failure applies to all aspects of simply being a human being, including the crass activity of bragging about your weight room stats and run times.
Failure has taught me more in life than I can possibly begin to imagine and accepting failure helps me to get the old creative juices flowing once again … Success breads and harbors contentment – How utterly boring!?!
There’s nothing more intimate in life than simply being understood. And understanding someone else-
We’re taught early in life that deep, passionate joy – love, can be found if we follow our most intense desires. It turns out though that these desire(s) are frequently pushing us into a personal hell. A hell riddled with loss, injury and suffering at every turn.
Since I started to explore my path towards developing a real – tangible joy, a healthy love of life. I learned that taking the time to explore failure and learning how to understand the subtle differences between success and failure is paramount. How many of us have started new fitness routines, taken up yoga or running with a sense of new hope, finding a new love … Only to find that they lead us right back to the pains we’ve experienced time and time before?
Many of us has taken center stage and acted out our personal “myth of lost love found.” The attributes of our failures, success and desires are unique to each one of us, these attributes are deep, personal and must be explored and understood if we wish not to repeat them … Farther down our amazing path(s) in life
If you walk away after reading patiently this morning, carrying one single thought throughout the rest of the afternoon , it would be this: Follow your heart exclusively. I believe this to be the kindest path to love.
We are so unwise that we wander about in times that do not belong to us, and do not think of the only one that does; so vain that we dream of times that are not and blindly flee the only one that is…Thus we never actually live, but hope to live-
Part Two: Fail Better
We try our best to ignore the excess baggage we accumulate, but every so often (maybe right now) it catches us off-guard, sneaking up on us when we’re not looking, and we find ourselves staring in surprised horror at the looming emotional darkness inside us.
At such times, many of us bury the baggage again as quickly as possible, we try to forget that it ever happened in the first place. Our grief, however, doesn’t disappear just because we ignore it. It sits comfortably inside our unconscious minds, continuing to silently accumulate as we marinate in the sauce of life.
As the days and years go by, the grief we store, builds up steadily. Unlike a nice series of Farmers Walks, our accumulated grief weighs us down and inhibits us, in many ways, too devious for us to realize. The weight of this inner grief leaves firm, aggressive footprints on our lives.
The more grief we hold inside, the more grief we hold back … The more we become cut off from our own authentic emotions, feelings, our true selves. It’s at this moment we lose the gentle feeling of being alive.
To illustrate our message today (it’s extremely rare for us to do this), proceed with the following:
HEAVY- Farmers Walk Medley (HEAVY means picking up and carrying 100% of your body weight?!?)
Heart Beat Walk, Stork Walk, Rack Position Walk, Ardha Uttanasana Walk (Ask), Single Arm Walk (50%), Piston Press Walk (50%)
There is only one way to make it through this day (workout), letting go, gently. Be well.