The Art Of Failing Up

“If you don’t know what you want to do, do everything.” – wise words spoken by my father.

My first aspiration was to be a gymnast. I enrolled in the local YMCA and spent my evenings hanging from bars. Then, I saw someone tumble viciously off the balance beam. I decided I could do flips for fun but, that the balance beam wasn’t going to be my future.

Instead, I turned to books for entertainment and discovered an entirely new world. Some might say I failed at gymnastics and they would be right.

When we hear the word “fail,” so many negative thoughts come to mind. As women, failure comes in various shades of embarrassment, envy, inadequacy, and fear. To fail is an unthinkable destiny.

Here’s the thing, you WILL fail. You will make a mistake. You will not be good at everything. Failure is a part of everyday life.

An hour ago, I failed at making a juicing recipe. I’ve made it countless times before, but this time it came out terrible. It was too acidic, the color was off, and I almost broke my juicer. I tried adding other ingredients and ended up with an entirely new drink that I liked better! This is what it means to fail up.

Fail upwards. Never allow a mistake to define you or keep you down. When you fail at one thing, try another. Sometimes, you’ll find that new thing is so much better than your original idea or plan. I almost failed an English literature class my sophomore year of college. The experience guided me to choose a different major, Communications, which I love and still find exciting some 10 years later. The next time you fail, realize you are failing up – on your way to something greater. Now go, fail on!

What about you? When was the last time you failed up?

Author: Erinn Davis