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You only FAIL when you stop trying to SUCCEED

You Only Fail When You Stop Trying to Succeed

By Liberty Forrest

Is there something you want to do? Some particular goal you have? Maybe it’s those pesky New Year’s Resolutions, a habit you want to break, for example stopping smoking. Or maybe something you want to learn to do, like learn to play the piano.

Have you tried to achieve that goal, but stumbled? Stopped smoking only to start again? And again and again and again? Then stopped stopping, gave up trying, resigned to the fact that you’re a failure?

Have you tried some sort of new business venture that didn’t go according to plan (i.e. didn’t work out at all) despite your having been absolutely certain it would be a great success?

Perhaps you haven’t even bothered to start. I love it when adults say things like, “I always wanted to play the piano” and I tell them, “So learn.” They say they’re too old. And I say, “You still have a pulse.” And then they insist that no, they just couldn’t learn anything new at this stage in their lives.

Well, I guess if they decide they can’t, then they can’t. It’s really more about “they won’t,” because they’ve decided not to even bother trying.

My mother used to shoot me down before I had even begun to try new things. Right up until she got dementia, she was still telling me, “You can’t do that!” when I’d mention something new I wanted to do or learn. Thankfully, I’d stopped believing her by then and would attempt all kinds of new things, usually succeeding. And it seemed the more I succeeded, the less happy she was about it – but that’s another article for another day…

When my children were little, it drove my mother nuts that I had confidence in them. My eldest daughter sings beautifully, and when she was 9, she was going to sing at a wedding. I wanted her to stand front and centre in the church so she could be seen and heard properly.

My daughter was quite happy with this, knew the lyrics inside out, backwards, and upside down. She was a very outgoing child, not at all nervous being in such a position. In fact, since she could speak she has always adored being the centre of attention so she was thrilled to be performing in front of an audience.

My mother insisted that she should be way over to one side, standing (virtually hiding) behind the piano where she “wouldn’t be scared” and with the lyrics there for her, just in case. There was a lot of heated discussion about this, and much of it was in front of my daughter so at least she heard that I had faith in her.

Unfortunately, I ended up caving because that was a long time ago before I knew how to stand up for myself.

As it turned out, people on one side of the church couldn’t hear or see my daughter very well – and she never did look down at the lyrics. She sang so perfectly and with such confidence; it was a beautiful thing to witness.

However, the poor girl was disappointed that she hadn’t got the opportunity to prove that she could do it – not just to my mother but to herself. She hadn’t been allowed the chance to succeed.

My mother was teaching insecurity and self-doubt, which really bothered me, but it was years before I understood that she was teaching what she knew. In her own way, she was trying to protect my daughter from failing and ending up lacking confidence, which was a major problem in my mother.

As the years passed, I could see that throughout her life, she’d felt like a failure in many ways. She projected a lot of her pain and disappointment onto the people she loved, fearing that they would end up in the same state. She wanted to do and learn and try things but because she lacked confidence, she gave up, often without even having tried.

The bottom line is that you only fail when you stop trying to succeed. So you’ve stopped smoking 286 times, only to begin again. Is that a good reason to say you’ve failed? Absolutely not. It just means you haven’t been successful at reaching your goal of becoming a non-smoker. Yet.

Whatever your goal is, as long as you keep trying to reach it, there is the chance you will succeed. If you want to be successful, stop thinking of yourself as a failure. You will only fail when you give up and refuse to try again.

Read More By Liberty Forrest

More by Liberty Forrest…

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If you keep doing what you’re doing -you’ll keep getting what you’ve got

By Liberty Forrest

Imagine this: Every morning, you get out of bed, put on your bathrobe and brush your teeth. Bleary-eyed, you stumble to the kitchen and put on a pot of coffee. While that’s brewing, you haul out a frying pan, put it on some heat and chuck in some butter.
Next, you get a little bowl. You throw in an egg, a bit of milk and a pinch of salt. You mix it all up, drop a piece of bread in the bowl, flip it over to coat both sides, and once that butter is melted, you place the bread in the pan.
You stand there absentmindedly staring at the bread, mulling over the coming day without drawing any particular conclusions about it because you’re not fully functional yet. You keep staring at the piece of bread and wondering how it looks on the bottom.
After a few minutes, it starts to smell like the bottom might be cooked. You flip it over and discover that it’s a beautiful golden brown. Your mouth begins to water as you wait for the other side to cook.
You remember that you need to get the jam and other necessary breakfast things out so you stop watching the bread. You gather everything you need and put it all on the table.
You can smell the coffee as it’s beginning to seep through the filter and into the waiting pot below. Your nose is happy, knowing that it’s almost time to sip that potent nectar that will jump-start your heart and get you moving for the day.
When the second side of the bread is cooked, you slide it out of the pan and onto a plate. You pad across the floor and put the plate on the table. Picking up a knife, you scoop some jam out of the jar and cover the golden French toast with sticky crushed berries and a light dusting of icing sugar (or perhaps you’d prefer syrup on yours).

You get your cup of coffee, return to the table and sit down to eat your French toast for breakfast.
And you do this every morning. Day after day, week after week, month after month. The Same thing. Every morning.

But wandering through your head now and then are strange thoughts. Occasionally, there is the one that says you’d really love crispy bacon and a couple of fried eggs and maybe some hash browns or toast. Perhaps a bowl of oatmeal, or an even stranger one saying that you might enjoy a bowl of homemade soup for breakfast. Or perhaps you would enjoy some freshly baked muffins.
Yes, those other thoughts wander through your mind, not just while you’re standing at the stove and staring at the egg-soaked bread as it fries in the buttered pan. Those thoughts creep in sometimes when you’re at work or doing the laundry or even at the grocery store where you could actually buy what you need to make those other breakfast. But you don’t.
So there you are, wishing you could have one of those other breakfasts. But oddly, none of those ever appears while you’re melting the butter in the pan and mixing the egg and milk every morning. No matter how often you stand there thinking about bacon and eggs or freshly baked muffins, all that ends up on the table is French toast and coffee.
Are you dissatisfied with your job? Do you keep saying the same things over and over again in an effort to resolve problems with your partner, your parent, or your child? Do you feel discontented, restless, stuck and frustrated, knowing something needs to change but then not changing it?
Well, as long as you don’t change it, it won’t change. Unless, of course, someone else does the changing first but if you’re going to wait for that, you might be waiting till they’re selling ice cream in The Very Hot Place.
If your words aren’t being heard and the problems are not being resolved, find different words, a different approach, or another tactic. If you hate your job, start looking for a new one or turn a hobby into a business on the side and build it up over time. If you’re tired of doing the same old things, then find some more exciting new ones.
The bottom line is, if you want your life to change, you’ve got to change your life. The possibilities for ways to improve it, to get it moving, and to make it better are endless.
But one thing’s for sure. If you keep doing what you’re doing, you’ll keep getting what you’ve got.

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