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Anything Worth Doing Requires the Courage to Fail

“A Lifetime of Mediocrity is a High Price to Pay for Your Safety” – Todd Henry

The last few weeks have been a perpetual roller coaster ride through the Skool of Life. There have been days when self doubt has reared its ugly head and I’ve wondered if I really am just chasing dreams and dragging ass through life. It’s been a series of ups and downs:

As you go through life you’re going to continually experience circumstances and  run across people that try to take the wind of your sails. They’ll try to force you to put your dreams back in a box as opposed to out in the world where they belong. We tend to get so caught up in what people think of us that it gets in the way of overcoming the fear of who we really are and finding our most magnetic qualities. Fear of what people will say, fear of failure, fear of how life won’t go according to plan, fear of failing to meet our own standards all paralyze us when it comes to leaving our mark on the world. There are few things as rewarding leaving your mark on the world and knowing that you’ve left people better off than when you found them. But, ANYTHING worth doing requires the courage to fail.

It’s possible I’ll fail. It’s possible that The Skool of Life will never be the bestselling book I dream that it will someday be. It’s possible that BlogcastFM will never turn into the media empire that I want it to so badly be. But the beauty that one simple question that makes a dramatic difference in your life is that it makes a hell of a lot of other things possible too.  While every leap of faith may not pay off, all it takes is one good wave for the world to forget about your failures and shine a light on your success.

My friend who is an amazing singer

The other day I was having lunch with one of my oldest friends, her husband, and her 16 month old son. As we were walking down the Santa Monica Promenade we stopped to listen to a street performer who was an amazing singer. My friend also happens be an incredibly talented singer. I asked her “do you still sing?” She said “in the shower and to my son. Where am I going to go sing as an adult?” For a moment I thought she had a good point. Then it occurred to me that we live in LA, a city where people are continually on the look out for talent, and you have an endless supply of open mic nights at your disposal. So, I told her that she should do go to an open mic night and sing. The funny thing is despite her talent, she was overcome by self doubt.

Even the most talented of people find themselves struggling with the courage to fail. But if we can remember that to our fear of uncertainty there is a flip side, then we tap into how amazing we all really are.  The ability to take risks, shake our wipeouts and move on from them is how can avoid the life of mediocrity that nobody was ever meant to live.

My Friend Who Won’t Push Publish

I have a friend who has setup her blog, and has even done a good amount of writing. She has material ready to go, but her fear of whether or not it’s good enough has kept her from pushing publish.  She’s been waiting for a guarantee and the reality of blazing a trail that puts you on the scenic route through life is that there are no guarantees. The only way to find out is to put your message out into the world. Chances are it won’t resonate with everybody, but it doesn’t have.

You might encounter the darkest of hours. It might be impossible to see the light at the end of the tunnel, but you absolutely have to believe it’s there. Because when you finally do see a light at the end of tunnel you’ll realize that the payoff was worth anything you had to go through. In that moment you’ll realize that to have lived any other way would have been completely insane.

Stop waiting to live the life you were meant to live and remember that time is one thing you can’t create more of. 

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