“Better to fight and fall, than to live without hope.” Volsunga Saga, c. 12
Have you ever heard that phrase, "failure is not an option"? I understand the sentiment, but I've never been a fan. That's because fear of failure is what stops people from pursuing their dreams in the first place.
Let's face it, failure disappoints. It stings. It hurts. And most of us naturally gravitate away from the things that cause us pain.
But I want to share a personal story about how failure can actually be good for you. In fact, it might just be the key to the success you're looking for.
When I was 18, they told me not to join the Army. I had flat feet, I was skinny, and weak. They said I’d never make it. I joined anyway and gained the experience and knowledge of a lifetime.
After the military, I finished college and applied to law school. I scored too low on the entrance exams and didn’t get in. I took it again....and again, until I made it. I finished in the top third of my class and gained a professional degree that will be with me forever.
When I created Barritus, they told me not to start a training company. There’s no money in it and market is too saturated, they said. Besides, you don’t have a YouTube channel and you’re not a navy seal/ninja/blackwater type with a sexy backstory. You’ll never make it.
Well, it hasn't been easy and there's been a lot of failures and false starts along the way, but it's been a full time gig for 7 years now. In that time I’ve trained units from the Department of Defense, Department of Justice, the Fortune 500, and police officers from over 60 departments around the country.
It’s been bloody and brutal path. The odds were never in my favor. And while I may not have had the success of others, it’s been my success. It’s been my life on my terms.
Whatever it is that you want, whatever dream lies over that mountain you face - it won’t come to you. You have to go get it. If the goal is lofty and the stakes high, you will suffer. You will suffer greatly. You will work, you will sacrifice - and even then there's no guarantee that you’ll make it.
No one will truly understand you. And even though some may support you, it is a journey you ultimately make alone.
But if you’re willing to press on, put your hand to the plough, and never look back- you will gain a true treasure:
Life on your terms.
You will fail, but failure doesn't have to be final. Think of failure as Nature's honest feedback...a course correction of sorts. Failures tells you where you went wrong and helps you adjust your efforts to get back on track.
Feel the fear, experience the doubts, and do it anyway.
Failure is an option....but quitting is not.
What's the one thing holding you back from doing what you want to do? Post in the comments below.