Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill
The year was 1964. We were one out away from winning first place. The count was 2 and 2 with a runner on third, score tied 1 to 1, and the bottom of the ninth, when “bam” the batter hits the ball over second base and our dream of winning the championship is crushed. There were eight teams in our division and only first and second place got trophies. Unlike today not everyone got trophies.
We failed. We tasted failure. Looking back on that time in my life, I remember how we all became closer and how we vowed to work harder. We were hell bent on improving our skills and becoming champions. In 1965 our dream came to fruition.
The greatest glory in living lies not in never failing, but rising every time we fail.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
I have spent a lot of hours through the year thinking about this and I believe in my heart that failure is the reason we became champions. It built character and made us work harder. It didn’t scar us for life or fill us with low self esteem.
We didn’t get participation trophies. We earned them. I think the big difference between now and back then is that the “family unit” was a lot stronger and more endeared. Don’t get me wrong, we were a long way from perfect. I remember fathers that just gave their child hell if they lost. Losing wasn’t an option. These are the actions that were detrimental to childhood development. It wasn’t the losing that caused the problems, it was bad parenting. Parents that wouldn’t take the time to teach their children that it wasn’t wrong to lose. That it happened. It was an integral part of life whether we wanted it or not.
At the end of the day, you are solely responsible for your success and your failure. And the sooner you realize that, you accept that, and integrate that into your work ethic, you will start being successful. As long as you blame others for the reason you aren’t where you want to be, you will always be a failure.” – Erin Cummings
Maybe I am just an antiquated, set in his ways, old man but I truly believe it is time to go back to the “olden days” and teach children what failure is and how to use it in their favor. No, everybody doesn’t get a trophy for participating, you have to earn it.
Then we need to teach them the importance of taking responsibility for their actions. That they are in charge of writing their “Book of Life” and they decide what is going in it. Teach them that “failure” can actually be a good thing. We also have to teach them how to cope with failure and how to use it to their advantage.
Thank you so much for reading my blog. I appreciate you taking the time. I hope you enjoyed it. Spread the love.