“Failure is not an option.” – Apollo 13, the movie
After an exhausting, inspiring, emotional, exciting, thrilling weekend with my mastermind – the first time we’ve all been together in the same place – my head is so filled with brainstorms, that you’d think there’s a natural disaster going on in my head.
But I mean that in a good way.
As I sit here, picking the random numbers for my winners in my 12 week challenge, that quote came to my mind. It wasn’t really said by anyone during the original Apollo 13 mission, but was the tag line for and one of the memorable quotes from the Ron Howard movie.
Ironically, it occurred to me that my whole life has used that phrase as a tag line.
I’ve been through a lot of “concentrated living” as someone once remarked to me. I was in my 20’s at the time, and I’ve concentrated a lot more living in the decade or so since.
Maybe it’s because of a childhood on welfare where my mom was able to make something from nothing every day. No one I know could make a dollar go farther – except maybe HER mom. Maybe it’ just a strong work ethic that my Dad drilled into my head.
Whatever the source, I’ve never seen ultimate failure as an option.
There’s a difference between intermedate and ultimate failure though, and this is where I’ve been stuck for a while.
See, not everything I do is a success – a shock, I know. 🙂
In reality, not everything turns out as you would dream it. I have learned to define this as “intermediate failure”. You know, kind of like “everything turns out good in the end, and if it’s not good, it’s not the end yet”.
So if I’m not finding success at something instead of seeing myself at a failure point, I choose to renegotiate, reconnoiter, or navigate into a new direction that will ultimately bring me to success.
I hope that makes sense.
So for me, failure has never been an option, just a pit stop on the way to success.
People have remarked – “I don’t know how you do it”, “I don’t know how you have come through so much, done so much, etc.”
I just didn’t see any other way. I don’t think I knew failure was an option.
You can’t quit when you fall off the horse. You get up, dust off, and get back on.
You can’t quit when the bike tips over. You get up, dust off, and start pedaling again.
Perhaps it’s persistance, determination. Who knows? The easiest way to look at it is that you choose to exclude failure as a permanent, ultimate option.
At least that’s what I’ve learned this weekend. My business has evolved from throwing spaghetti on a wall, to a clearly defined objective. And even in that, I’ve discovered that there was even more clarity to be had.
And clarity makes all things new.
Forgive me if I sound a bit cryptic today. I’m tired, but excited about everything that’s on the horizon for my business this year. With a cadre of amazing, brilliant women standing at the ready to celebrate and support me (and I them), there are so many options and possibilities for me now that I only imagined might have existed.
Clarity is transformative.
When you hit a wall, what do you do? Where do you stand? Are you so close to the wall that you can’t tell the dimensions? Can’t find a way around? Look behind you, or above you, or along the wall in one direction of the other.
Or call out for help.
Or start digging.
Or send up smoke signals.
Mark Joyner talks about “hitting it until you hit it”. It’s the same idea.
The means may not always bring about your desired end, but there’s ALWAYS a option.
…And failure doesn’t have to be one of them.