My youngest daughter is now 6 yrs old. She’s an absolute trip. Nothing, I mean nothing slows her down. You could say she’s like the Tasmanian devil, that is super sweet and kind yet also a whirling dervish of sorts. She also has a knack for coming up with super-witty one-liners despite some serious processing disorders and learning challenges. The kid always has a smile on her face and very rarely gets down on herself, despite things not going her way often.
When all this craziness of life got on we were discussing how our family would handle this and the attitude we would choose to confront all these challenges. She spoke up…”so dad, we’re gonna be busy living life, not dying life!” Bingo!! She nailed it, not bad for a 5 yr old. So, how are you living life?
Freedom in Failure
Many of you have heard of Sara Blakely by this point. She started the company Spanx and turned it into a billion dollar a year revenue business. Pretty impressive.
She credits her dad and the question he used to ask her each week with her success: ‘What have you failed at this week?’ Think about that, sitting at the dinner table and he asked her what she failed at…when she told him, he praised her! If she didn’t try he asked her to find something to fail at.
It’s absolutely brilliant. We are all apprehensive about the future and most of us are apprehensive about not living up to our expectations into the future. Yet here this man taught his daughter what it meant to fail and fail well so she would not have that fear or apprehension.
Let me tell you, I’ve been using this for a year with my kids. They ‘ve done things I never thought possible for their age because they were given permission to fail and fail wildly with no repercussions.
Action time: Give yourself, your wife and kids permission to fail at something they need to be trying.
Freedom in Failure
If you haven’t failed lately then are you really living a life worth living?
I implore you to seek out failure.
I give you permission to do so in a grand way.
We have a purpose greater than we are living into, how can you get there if you are not pushing yourself beyond the boundaries? How can you make it to the next level without some opportunity to not pass the test? Why choose easy when you already know the outcome?
So, how have you failed lately?
Come on now, you’re a man, choose something this week and go big or go home! After all we’re called to be “busy living life, not dying life!!”
Seek failure and the returns of successes and self-realization will abound and that inner leader, the real you will spring forth and a whole new world will blossom before you.
- Ask your family to try to fail at something weekly
- Lead them by trying things to fail at yourself weekly
- Share your failings openly with yourself and others, humanity needs more authentic men
Don’t Fear That Day!
Jonathan E. Kennedy Jr.