There is no shame in failing. This is a lesson I learned the hard way so I hope in sharing it with you that you can learn it easier than I did. There’s no shame in mixing something up or making a mistake. I just made a mistake recording a video and I started telling some story I’d heard before and it came out all wrong. It didn’t come out at all like the original story. I just said “no big deal” and started making another video.
How long in my life did I go about thinking failure was the worst thing in the world? How long did I try to avoid failure as much as possible? How much shame did I find in producing anything that was a failure? In school I worked so hard so I would never be considered a failure. I worked hard to get good grades. I was so scared of bringing home a bad grade that I would work all night on a paper to make sure it was perfect.
I went to great lengths to make sure it was perfect but I learned the best things thought failure. I’ve learned some of the best lessons in my life by screwing things up and doing things as wrong as you can do them. I said things as wrong as you can say them. I was as mean as I could possibly be. I’ve learned so many good things that way that now I’ve learned also that failure is nothing to be ashamed of. If this is something that sounds foreign to you then maybe you can learn something here. If this sounds comfortable to you, then maybe you’ll feel at home hearing me describe this. I’m lucky today that when I fail at something I don’t beat myself up over it.
Now, when I mess up a video, instead of getting upset, I laugh at it. That is a miracle. I used to get mad when I’d mess a video up. I’d curse at myself and use lots of negative self talk. It’s amazing today that I laughed when I messed the video up. I thought it was funny how bad I screwed it up and just started over and did another one. There’s nothing to be ashamed of in failing because you can just try again.
So much in life we’re afraid of failing at these things and it’s our fear of failing that makes it happen. We are so afraid of failing that we create failure. There’s no shame in being a human being. Human beings are full of failure. Human beings are full of opportunities to mess things up. You can’t be human and have perfection. That’s just how life works.
It’s amazing then when I tolerate failure how much I learn. When I’m tolerant of failing in the last video, I’m immediately able to go back and start making a new one. When I get upset at failing to make the video I’m more likely to mess the next video up.
I’ve avoided a lot of things in my life because I didn’t’ want to fail at them again. I was ashamed at having failed and I thought the only thing to do was to never do anything in that area again.
The easiest thing to do is never deal with that past failure again. That’s why I had so many failures in my life because I was so quick to judge something as a failure. It’s amazing how many dates I went on vs. how many second dates I went on. You’re just getting to know someone, you’re thinking about spending your life with someone. In terms of health consequences, is one of the most disastrous things you can do, if done poorly. If it doesn’t go well, we’re not worth dating. We feel like we screwed everything up.
We are trying to do something difficult, and then we get mad when it doesn’t work out. Here’s a perfect example. I just failed at a game, and for most of my life that would’ve made me mad. I would’ve thought the game was stupid or that shouldn’t have happened. I would’ve made up stories and defended myself.
You might wonder why I’d be ashamed to fail in a video game. Video games are just like the rest of life. Most of the things we do aren’t more or less important than a video game. We take them so serious and get so mad when we fail at them. yet, what does it matter if you lose a game of Call of Duty? What does it matter if you get an F on a paper? You’ll get another one. Instead we think about not getting into “the right” college or not getting the job we want. If you can see that fear of the future, then you have the chance to not go through the same cycle over.
Can see that the reason for failure is hoping for salvation in the future? Deep down you believe that at some point in the future you will be saved. You will get what you need in the future. You will have what you need in the future. You are afraid of failure.
I’ve been afraid of failure because I believed certain things would prevent my salvation. There were things I could say that would prevent me from being saved in the future. If I got an F on that paper then my salvation in the form of a great job would never get to come. My salvation in the form of good grades so I could prove I was a good enough person would never come.
All my fear of failure boiled down to feeling like I wasn’t good enough. In the future, I would be saved. I would be good enough at some point then I would be saved. Now, it’s nice to have freedom from that.
For most of my life when I’ve played video games, it was an incredible failure to go down on level 20. I know I’ve gotten to level 39 before. That would make me mad and it would come out in different ways like frustration with friends or family. I often would scream at the video game.
I’m playing this game because I enjoy it and it seems some people enjoy watching the footage from it. What does it really matter what level I go down on? What does it matter how far I get? There’s nothing I can hope to get out of this game that I don’t already have right now.
The last video I was trying to make was about how I have what I want already. I have everything I could possibly ever need already. There is nothing I could possibly hope to get out of the future. You can see that you already have what you need right now. You don’t need to be afraid of anything and you especially don’t need to be afraid of failure.
If you need proof that you don’t need to be afraid of failure, look at what’s going to happen right now. You see something I just went thought life with you that used to bother me a lot and look what’s happening. I’m playing again right now. It’s like it never happened, that’s how life is. You get to do the same thing. You get new opportunities over and over again. If you fail, you always get to try again.
Thomas Edison, the inventor of the light bulb, once said:
“I didn’t make a light bulb, I found a thousand ways not to make a light bulb and then I found a way to make one.”
What I’ve been doing with my work online has been a journey like that. I found a thousand ways not to do things online. The main difference I see between the people learning with me and what I see is that I am willing to screw things up. Many of the people that are learning with me still have an intolerance for failure. They fear that if they fail then they’ll be seen as a failure.
I teach a course on Facebook ads and it’s one of the top courses on Udemy. What I see out of the students taking the courses is that they get frustrated when things don’t work. In the course, I screwed up several times with Facebook Ads. Almost everything you could do wrong, I’ve done it wrong. aAlmost any bad thing that can happen with ads online have happened to me and that’s why I’ve learned so much. I’ve learned all these failures.
A lot of nice words are said about my wonderful wife. Do you know how many times I did dating wrong? Hundreds! Do you know how many items I asked girls for their numbers and got shot down or got fake numbers? Do you know how many dates I got excited about and then within a few minutes, realized it was not going to work?
I learned the most from mt biggest failures. The ones that drove me to the edge were the ones where I got gigantic growth out of. I wouldn’t even be here if I hadn’t messed so many things up. I’m thankful now, today, for all the things I messed up and if you see that then there’s nothing to be afraid of. If you’re thankful for the things that went wrong and thankful for the things that went right, there’s nothing to be afraid of.
I pray today that I remember failure is nothing to be ashamed of. I pray today that I remember that after every failure will be another chance for success. I pray that you have the chance to learn these same lessons. I pray that the failures you’ve experienced can work for you and teach you everything you need to know. I pray that you can see you’ve failed enough times to figure out how to do it right. I make these videos because I love you and I want you to have a great life. Thank you and I hope you have a great day today.