Thursday, July 14, 2011

How to Fail Gracefully.

I blame it on the technological age.

Instant gratification and perfect results have taught us that failure is unacceptable and that something should be done right the first time no matter how difficult or arduous the task.

Or...maybe it hasn't taught us that and we've just come to expect it.

Either way, it's hard to fail at any task and I think too often we equate the failure of an activity with the quality of the individual.

Sometimes it's the necessary result because there are very few lessons learned in success.

Most successes are just another attempt after a string of failures. to fail?

First of all, don't get serves no purpose.

Secondly, figure out what you did...go back and think about the steps you took to get there.

Third, try to figure out what went wrong...if nothing comes to mind, then try changing something to see if you get better results. (remember what Einstein said..."The definition of insanity is doing the same thing twice and expecting different results.")

Fourth, write down what you may be the lesson you needed to learn.

Fifth, try again...eventually you will succeed.

I think the most important step is the fifth one.

I'm also learning that just because I've learned how to do "A" pretty well and could probably do it in my sleep, that doesn't necessarily mean that I can do "B" and the two are probably not as closely related as I had previously imagined.

Metalworking is hard and the more I try, the stronger my admiration for metal artists grows.

Try something new today, and don't be afraid to fail, there are lessons to be learned.

all photos via antontang


  1. I do agree with your strategy here. Personally, I find the most pleasure in the process, rather than the outcome. Seeing what I want in my head and then working out how to do it is so satisfying. There really isn't any failure in that approach.

  2. "If at first you do not succeed, try, try agian..." This quote has always been my moto. One should not give up just because the first time did not give the results one was looking for. Great post Marcie!

  3. For every success, I have to make MANY attempts. I like your post. Very thougtful!

  4. Yes you have to fail in order to really succeed so there is more pleasure in the success. I totally agree with everything although the getting mad part I REALLY need to work on. LOL

  5. I actually hope that I fail when I start a new venture or a class. Because it is in the failing that I learn the most especially what to do to rectify it and move forward! You always manage to give me much to chew on, Miss Marcie. And I love seeing where your creative journey is taking you.
    Enjoy the day!

  6. I've always treated failure as part of learning, yes it's frustrating, and can be maddening if perhaps you are on a time limit. I was looking back at some of my first attempts at bead weaving the other day, and i can't believe how far i've come since then, the failures spurred me on to do better, it is very rare to achieve the results you want the first time, but this is good because it makes us better creators. At college we are taught to keep and record our failures, infact they actively encourage it, so we can look back and say "ok so this didn't work, so how about trying it this way" We record these in our creative journals, and i think it's a brilliant way to keep track.
    Looking forward to seeing your creations xx

  7. that post was just what i needed. and those photos are adorable. thanks!

  8. HI,Marcie:
    Thank You very much for having visited my blog,also for a nice comment:-)

    Failure is counted into the cost of success.Possibly,I am a person,who visualises failure 'in advance',but with cool calculation-without getting in panic.The clearer imagination of failure at the beginning,the least disappointment later,in case of failure's occurence.
    Reading my 'golden thought' above-You may describe my attitude as typical of an old groucher,who sees everything in black,before realises it is green:-)Nothing like that! I am really the optimist! Striving to a new goal I never say -*I'll try*.I am an optimist-maximalist-everything,or nothing:-)Either I will do it,or fail.
    I.e. :I started beading one month and a half ago.Nobody believes me,but it is true.Preparing to an entirely new task,I read books,watched tutorials and lots of sets made by others.One day I said to myself:-go ahead!Either You win,or fail!After all,nothing more can happen:-)
    I can say,I have succeeded.I love beading.I still learn and develop my skills,observing the Masters,admiring their Work and making the following set with the new doze of inspiration.
    People should learn,how to fail with dignity.There is still a lot of honor in it-enough to see a little farther,behind the horizon.
    I am terribly sorry,if I have made any mistakes-English is not my native language-I use it primarily at home :-)
    Warm Hugs from Denmark-Halinka-

  9. You are so right, Marcie!

    Sometimes a mistake can be a gift. In my line of work, some of the greatest discories through history have been by chance or mistake (the discovery of penicillin is a great example). I believe this to be true also for the more creative activities. And like you said, even if you do fail and have start all over, there is always something to learn.