Saturday, March 11, 2017

FAILURE (2017 Q1 Report)

In a new running routine, I will issue a quarterly report of my life (four times a year, every three months), summed in a single-word title.

The year launched with great promise, but crashed and burned spectacularly soon after. I'm still crawling my way out of the rubble, dizzy and daze.

I was coaching a team of bright law students for a national competition, but fell short in the Final and finished Runners-Up - FAIL!

I was excited about tutoring my favourite batch of law students due to graduate in their final semester, but someone else got the slot instead - FAIL!

I was reaching out for random odd jobs, but nothing happened - FAIL!

Story of my year so far...

Stepping Backwards

Oh, some good things did come my way, bringing small doses of happiness. But I wouldn't consider them as successes. Luck isn't success. Doing what I'm already good at isn't success. Getting a pat on the back isn't success.

I don't expect to achieve success overnight, of course. But I consider my first quarter of 2017 as a failure because of the little progress I made so far. Feels like every step I take forward, I fall two steps backwards.

Some people define success as getting married, buying a house and being promoted. Not me. I see success as something special, beyond the fundamental needs and routine of life. And I haven't got that yet - not even close.

Success, Impossible

Yes, I set high standards for myself. I don't dream about stepping on the moon. What's the point? It's been done before. I'm aiming for the stars.

Yes, a lot of my goals are not within my capacity and control. So what? That can't be an excuse.

Yes, I've failed a lot this year. But it's okay. Life goes on. I expect more failures to come. I expect to fail 99 times before tasting success.

Yes, it seems like I'm normalising failure. Maybe. But that's good. It means I'm pushing myself hard. Success doesn't come easy, and anything that comes easy isn't success.

Yes, it seems like the success I'm aiming for is an unattainable goal. Maybe. So what? Success is achieving something beyond our reach. It has to be. Anything less is merely a task, business as usual, stuff just happening.

...but there is always a new hope

Failing is Not Failure

Will I take a giant step towards success next quarter - or even the end of the year? I don't know. But I hope so. If it happens, it happens. If it doesn't, well, there's always next year.

What if I keep failing and failing, and never quite succeed? That sucks, but so be it. I rather fail 99 times than die without ever trying to succeed at all. Failing doesn't make one a failure.

For failure is not the absence of success, but the self-denial of success.

And a failure is not one who fails, but one who never dares to succeed at all.

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