Beyond the Fear of Failure – Day 293 of 365 Days to a Better You

Today’s Thought

“The fear of failure is the shortest route to it.”
~ Ray Davis

Success writer John C. Maxwell, in his book Failing Forward: Turning Mistakes into Stepping Stones for Success (Amazon Link), says the following.

“Failure is an inside job. So is success. If you want to achieve, you have to win the war in your thinking first. You can’t let the failure outside you get inside you.”

I was recently reading an article where they were comparing Japanese and American students’ approaches to learning. The writer pointed out that it is not uncommon to see a Japanese student fail numerous times on his or her way to learning something successfully. In Japan, there is no stigma to failing along the road to success. It is an expected and accepted part of the learning process.

In the United States, we attach a tremendous amount of stigma to failing. So much so that American students are generally not willing to go through the process of failing to learn. American students tend to focus their attention on subjects where they can be successful and shy away from subjects where failure might be involved.

So instead of going through the failure to learn process we often hear our children say things like, “I hate math.” They don’t really mean that they have something personal against math. What they are saying is, “I would have to fail too many times to get math and I’m not willing to do it.”

I’m not here to say that one nation’s approach to learning is superior. However, this fear of failing extends beyond school and impacts our adult life as well. Many people have big dreams or goals they would like to accomplish, but, again, they are still not willing feel the sting of failure to get there. Instead, they learn to play it safe just as their children do with the math.

That’s where my little aphorism at the top comes in. When fear failure so much that we are unwilling to try, unwilling to risk learning new things and failing a little; we cannot achieve our goals and dreams. All because of the stigma of failure.

Recondition yourself to overcome your fear of failure. In an outstanding article, Olimpio Zapanta offers five steps for overcoming the fear of failure.

  1. Divorce failure from your self-esteem.
  2. Failure is not all bad. It can be a great teacher.
  3. Failure and success are intimately linked – failure is often a prerequisite for success.
  4. Successful people fail constantly. That’s how they succeed.
  5. Everything doesn’t have to be perfect before you go for it.

With these five great steps and determination, don’t let the fear of failure sidetrack you from your destiny! Remember that “A Success” is what we call someone who had the courage to persist through failures.

Success and failure are not the result of circumstances. They are not the result of intelligence or luck. All of these things can contribute, but the overwhelming predictor of success is the refusal to give up. Your dreams await. They may be eleven steps away. Don’t called it a failure on step 9.

Follow your bliss! Experience your bliss! Become your bliss!

Ray

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Selfish You – Day 269 of 365 Days to a Better You

It’s not always selfish to put yourself first, nor selfless to put others first. Wisdom is knowing when to do which.

From selfless in the last post to selfish today. Not to worry. It’s the good kind of selfish. Here’s my question for you. Are you selfish enough with your time to pursue your goals and dreams?

This is a hard one for many people. Life is demanding. Most of us have to work. We have to sleep, eat, commute, and run errands. We have family, friend, and community commitments. We’re programmed to say yes to things and there’s noting wrong with that except…except when a big dream you have is constantly the 10th down in your to-do list. That’s a deal-breaker.

When you find this happening consistently, you have to get selfish or say goodbye to your dreams. You have to say a word many of us have been conditioned not to say. That word is no. You have to do it even when people you care about don’t understand.

Here’s the thing. Having dreams doesn’t make you unique. Almost everyone has dreams. What makes you rare is that you have a determination to see yours to fruition. Most people sideline their dreams, allowing life to swallow them whole.

It takes strength to stay on course against that tide constantly trying to pull you away from your shore. It takes determination to keep going when everyone around you oozes, “What’s the point?”

I’m not telling you to ice out your friends and family or shirk life’s responsibilities. I am telling you that you that, if you allow it, your dreams will never naturally rise to the top. There’s no perfect moment when this and this and that is done. There’s no time when you’re obligations are going to green light the time you need to pursue your dreams.

You have to take the time, take the heat, and miss some things everyone else is doing. If your dream matters enough, though, it’s the price to be paid for them.

If that price seems too high, you’re not pursuing the right dream. Find your balance and you’ll find your mountaintop.

I wish you nothing but the best until we meet again!

Ray

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It’s Never Too Late – Day 236 of 365 Days to a Better You

There are many mental traps you can fall into that can limit your pursuit of your dreams. One of the most common and believable is, “It’s too late.” My goal in the rest of this post is to convince you that’s not so!

25 It’s Never Too Late Quotes

    1. Who told you it was too late? And more importantly, why did you choose to believe them?

~Richelle Goodrich

    1. So long as you have courage and a sense of humor, it’s never too late to start life afresh.

~Freeman Dyson

    1. in the end you are the only one who can make yourself happy. More important, …it is never too late to find out how to do it.

~Ruth Reichl

    1. No star is ever lost we once have seen. We always may be what we might have been.

~Adelaide Ann Proctor

    1. As long as you’re breathing, it’s never too late to do some good.

~Maya Angelou

    1. It’s never too late to give up what you are doing and start doing what you realize you love.

~Hans Rosling

    1. It’s never too late. Don’t focus on what was taken away. Find something to replace it and acknowledge the blessing you have.

~Drew Barrymore

    1. You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.

~C.S. Lewis

    1. It’s never too late to learn.

~Malcolm Forbes

    1. It’s never too late to mend your ways.

~American Proverb

    1. It’s never too late to be great.

~Jordan Burroughs

    1. Remember that it’s never too late and you’re never too old to get the body you were born to have.

~David Kirsch

    1. I just want to show the world it’s never too late to get your diploma, and show kids they should stay in school and not wait until you’re old to get it.

~Flavor Flav

    1. I’m living the dream! I just want to tell actors and writers it’s never too late, and it can happen when you least expect it.

~Geneva Carr

    1. It’s never too late to take your heart health seriously and make it a priority.

~Jennie Garth

    1. It’s never too late to reclaim your inner diva and reclaim your inner strength.

~Michelle Visage

    1. Sometimes too late is just in time.

~C.J. Carlyon

    1. It’s never too late to take another path.

~David Suzuki

    1. It’s never too late to give up your prejudices.

~Henry David Thoreau

    1. It’s never too late to drop your beliefs and let your wounds heal.

~Adam Scythe

    1. There is nothing better in life than being a late bloomer. Success can happen at any time and at any age. You can have a spiritual awakening and discover a new side of yourself. And best of all, love can happen at any age.

~Salma Hayek

    1. You’re never too old, never too bad, never too late and never too sick to start from the scratch once again.

~Bikram Choudhury

    1. Live your life and forget your age.

~Norman Vincent Peale

    1. Aging is a physical process, but age is a state of mind.

~Ted Smith

    1. It matters only that you manifest your genius; it doesn’t matter when. It’s never too late or too early.

~Mark Victor Hansen

10 People Who Proved It’s Never Too Late

  1. Satchel Paige – denied his right to be among the elite pitchers in MLB history by the color barrier, Paige threw his first MLB pitch at age 42 and his last at 59.
  2. Laura Ingalls Wilder – the world-famous author of the “Little House” books didn’t have her first book published until she was 65.
  3. Gladys Burrill – competed in her first marathon at 86 and her last at 92.
  4. Susan Boyle – was 47 when she shocked the world on Britain’s Got Talent to become a global singing star.
  5. Peter Mark Roget – retired at 61 and always enjoyed making lists. At age 73, he published one of the most read books in the English language – Roget’s Thesaurus.
  6. Anna Mary Robertson – took up painting at 67 after her husband’s death. When she was 78, an art collector bought all her paintings. They were shown at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. She became known to the world as “Grandma Moses.”
  7. Ronald Reagan – while today we think little of a candidate running for president in their 70s, Ronald Reagan took office in 1981 at the age of 69; considered ancient at the time. He’d run for president twice before and failed. He remains the oldest elected president at 73 Years 249 days and oldest serving president at 77 years 349 days.
  8. Colonel Harland Sanders – at 65, a penniless retired small-time restaurant owner took his “secret recipe” chicken on the the road looking for franchisees. The story goes he was rejected by more than 1000 restaurant owners before he found one in Salt Lake City. Within 10 years, Kentucky Fried Chicken became the world’s largest chicken restaurant chain.
  9. Ray Kroc – worked as a cup and milkshake machine salesman. One of his customers – the McDonald brothers – ran a hamburger joint that impressed him. At 59, he bought the company and turned into the world’s largest franchise before his death.
  10. Harry Bernstein – wrote more than 20 unpublished novels. At the age of 97, his autobiographical novel – The Invisible Wall – was published to critical acclaim. He followed that with two more books.

Well, I don’t know about you, but I’m fresh out of reasons why it’s too late to pursue my dreams. Let’s get to it!

Keep believing in a Better You and a better world, my friends.

Ray

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Fail Early, Often, and Forward – Day 26 of 365 Days to a Better You

Fail early, fail often, but always fail forward.

John C. Maxwell

Ask any successful person how they achieved so much success without failure and they’re likely to look at you like you have two heads. Failure is a vital part of success. In fact, most success is impossible without it.

This is where ordinary, mediocre thinkers get stuck. I know you’re not one of them.

They have been taught all their lives that failure is disaster and so they’ve learned to avoid failure at all costs. Now the math is simple. If most success is the result of failure and you’re afraid of failing, you’re leaving yourself out of the running for most success.

Extraordinary thinkers know that failure is part of the price. Does it mean they’re not worried about it? No. It means they’re willing to risk that discomfort for a bigger outcome.

The world and many of the people around you don’t help either. You’d think when someone puts a dent in the Universe, or even really goes for it, that the world would welcome them as conquering heroes. But, it doesn’t always go that way.

Kitty Hawk, North Carolina December 17, 1903: A group of people gathered to ridicule the Wright Brothers for trying to fly. When they pushed their plane out onto the field, people laughed. A few minutes later no one was laughing. A few years later those people were probably telling everyone how they were there when history was made.

Thomas Edison once replied to a reporter’s question about all his failed attempts with the light bulb with the following quote (later modified to 10,000).

“I have not failed 700 times. I have not failed once. I have succeeded in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work.”

What history will you make by risking setback? How many times must you fail to taste success on your big dream?

Albert Einstein said, “Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition form mediocre minds.

Every time someone upsets the status quo with a game-changing idea, there is a long line of people ready to say, “That will never work.”

With all that naysaying going on, it’s easy to quit when you meet with early failure. Push through, my friend. Keep on playing to the empty seats. Keep on writing even if no one is reading. Keep on dreaming even when no one else cares.

You’re the one who will be sitting in that proverbial rocking chair one day wishing you had. Failure? Ha! Fail forward! Don’t let your dreams die on the sword of inaction. Take action and let chips fall where they may!

You ARE exceptional!

Ray

Ray Davis is founder of The Affirmation Spot, co-founder of 6 Sense Media, and author Anunnaki Awakening.

31 Success Affirmations – The Affirmation Spot for Wednesday October 19, 2011

Today’s Thought:

“I learned this, at least, by my experiment: that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.”
~ Henry David Thoreau

Dictionary.com defines success as 1) the favorable or prosperous termination of attempts or endeavors. 2) the attainment of wealth, position, honors, or the like. That may be the technical definition of success, but I prefer Thoreau’s notion of success. He indicates that it is about what we might call today “aligning” with your dreams and moving confidently in their direction.

Success can mean anything to anyone. It need not be about wealth and money. Success could be living in a persistent state of joy or giving everything you have away to others or simply being the person you came here to be. You should consider carefully what it means to you so that you can align with your dreams and move in their direction.

Today I am sharing some affirmations written to help you focus your mind and align your actions with your success.

  1. Success is the natural outcome of me being truly me!
  2. Give me an inch of opportunity and I’ll convert it into a mile of success!
  3. Today I am sharing my talents with a world thirsty for what I have to offer. Success is mine!
  4. Today my talent and determination are a winning combination for success!
  5. As sure as the Sun comes up, my inner winner shows up and brings me to success!
  6. I am at the top of my game and success is mine!
  7. As I learn to celebrate my successes, they come one after the other!
  8. I am a success magnifier! As my success grows, so does the success of the people around me!
  9. Today my excuses for failure are replaced by my reasons to succeed!
  10. Today I handle my doubt and fears and become the success I know I am!
  11. I make as much success as I am willing to believe in. Today I believe big!
  12. Today is my day. My successes are expanding and magnifying.
  13. I am pushing forward to new successes. Success is now part of my DNA!
  14. Right here and right now I am punching my ticket to the top!
  15. Failure is not an option for me! I keep pushing forward to new successes!
  16. I pursue success! I achieve success! I become success!
  17. Today I am bursting through barriers on my way to a successful day!
  18. Today I am ready, willing, and able to take my success to the next level!
  19. My life is an ocean of opportunity. I am riding the waves to unprecedented success!
  20. The winds of hope and determination fill my sails, as I set course for another success!
  21. I am determined! I am committed! I am successful!
  22. My life is what I make of it and I CHOOSE to make it a successful place to be!
  23. When I expect the success, I always get it!
  24. Today and every day, I am supercharged for success!
  25. I listen to and emulate successful people. As I do, my successes multiply.
  26. My thoughts plus my actions equal my success.
  27. As I take the lead in my life and act with commitment and determination, success follows me everywhere.
  28. Today I bring my best and achieve complete success!
  29. My success is a choice not a chance.
  30. My belief creates opportunities and I convert opportunities into success!
  31. Today I use my failures to fertilize the field of tomorrow’s success!

Follow your bliss! Experience your bliss! Become your bliss!

Ray

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