Thursday, March 1, 2018

Failure Is The Greatest Teacher

Somewhere midway through the latest episode of Star Wars, the ghost of Yoda appears to Laidback Luke and says "The greatest teacher, failure is."

Yes, The Last Jedi is all about failure.

(The movie itself is an epic failure, but let's not go there or I'll be dragged further into the Dark Side.)

How prescient that quote proved to be.

Last weekend, I had an epic failure. Yes, I failed big time. The kind of fail that keeps evoking another stronger kind of four-letter F-word in my head.

(Maybe it's the Force punishing me for my lack of faith in the sequels...)

The greatest failure, Disney is

The Greatest Failure

It was mind-numbing. It was soul-crushing. It was life-shattering.

That's how failure goes.

It makes you want to run away and hide yourself on an isolated swamp or island in a faraway part of the universe. It makes you question your values and goals. It makes you feel like giving up on life altogether.

The worst thing is, I didn't just fail myself.

I failed my friends. I failed my students. I failed all those who put their trust in me.

The greatest failure is failing other people.

The Greatest Teacher

Maybe I shouldn't be surprised. Maybe I shouldn't feel so sad. Maybe I shouldn't had expected success.

After all, failure runs through my veins. In fact, I failed same time last year, at the very same hurdle. Yes, I did make some small steps of progress lately, but that now seems like a false dawn. Such a long resume of failures, I have.

And since failure is the greatest teacher, it should mean that I'm on the way to be a great teacher. Right? RIGHT?

Funny logic, but it does make sense.

I can tell you when to speed up and slow down. I can point out if a shimmering horizon is but a mirage. I know which paths lead to the Dark Side.

After all, there's more to learn from our failures than our successes. The bright lights of success often blind us from our flaws. The misery of defeat instead forces us to gaze ourselves in the mirror.

"I have failed you, friends... I have failed you all..."
Failure Is A Great Friend

To fail over and over again is a horrible feeling. But I'm not about to give up just yet. And thankfully, there are some of you out there who haven't given up on me as well.

And perhaps that's the greatest thing about failure.

Failure teaches us to trust each other.

Failure teaches us to never give up on each other.

Failure teaches us to pick each other up to fight another day.


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