Resetting After Failure – TSMP #76

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Intro: Well, That Sucked

  • Some of Jay’s Big Failures
    • Running out of money and being booted from college after 6 years…
      • …AND he did not get a degree
    • Getting cheated on by his GF (who then promptly got knocked up)
    • Breaking his friendship with his best friend of 8 years
    • Years of serious depression…eventually considering suicide
    • Continuously losing in day trading for the last year (Spent over $3k on education, Lost almost $8k in the market, Down $50,000 in virtual money, so far ZERO overall profit)
    • Recently hurt his back…and even more recently his knee
  • Some of Matt’s Big Failures
    • Injury in police academy
    • Wife Cheating…Then Divorce
    • Fat Matt
    • Multiple injuries when trying to not be fat matt
    • Other Failures

Famous Failures

  • And guess what? Our failures are just tiny little things compared to so many other huge failures by famous people:
  • In 1985, due to his volatile and aggressive nature, Steve Jobs was fired from Apple, the company he had created.
  • Steven Spielberg, director of Jurassic Park, Jaws, and Indiana Jones, tried to get into film school and was rejected three different times.
  • Walt Disney was fired from his job at a newspaper because “he lacked imagination and had no good ideas.” In 1921 Walt Disney invested all his money in his first animation company which failed miserably. In 1927 MGM refused Walt’s idea of Mickey Mouse, telling him women would be terrified of a giant mouse on a screen. 
  • Stephen King’s first novel Carrie was rejected by 30 different publishers. His wife fished the manuscript out of a trashcan and convinced her husband to give it one more shot. John Grisham’s first book, “A Time to Kill”, was rejected twenty-eight times.
    • Note to self: 30ish failures for my first novel
  • Albert Einstein couldn’t speak clearly until age 9, was kicked out of school due to behavior problems and was refused entrance to the prestigious Zurich Polytechnic School. He tried to get a job as a physics teacher but was turned down at every school he applied to and was forced to take a job as a patent clerk to avoid unemployment.
  • Abraham Lincoln was defeated in his run for state legislature (1832), failed in business (1833), had a nervous breakdown (1836), was defeated in his bid for Congress (1843), defeated for US senator (1854), defeated as vice-presidential candidate (Note: They ran separately at that time) (1856) and defeated again as US senator (1858) before finally becoming president (1860).
  • Henry Ford’s first two automobile companies failed. Not his first two automobiles – his first two automobile companies.
  • Oprah Winfrey was fired from an early job as a television news anchor.
  • Jim Carrey At his first stand-up at a club he was booed off stage. Then when he auditioned for Saturday Night Live for the 1980-81 season he was rejected for the job.
  • Elvis Presley was fired from the Grand Ole Opry and was told to go back to truck driving.
  • Colonel Sanders of KFC fame was rejected over 1000 times before finding a franchise partner.

WHAT in the FUCK is WRONG with us??? Why do we keep FAILING???

(A Short List of) Reasons We May Be FAILING

  1. We don’t know how to commit
  2. We aren’t willing to make sacrifices and pay the price
  3. We do everything we can to avoid pain and suffering
  4. We hate doing new things and sucking at them
  5. We hate looking – and feeling – stupid
  6. We can’t stand criticism from other people
  7. We don’t know how to fight for what we want
  8. We’ve never developed courage
  9. Nobody has ever told us that we CAN succeed
  10. Many people have told us that we ARE failures
  11. We’re so used to failure that it’s all we know how to do
  12. We don’t believe we’ll ever be successful
  13. We don’t remember what it feels like to succeed

Why Do We Fail?

  • Do we keep failing our job interviews because we’re not currently hireable? Very possible
  • Do we keep getting rejected by women because we’re not sexually attractive? Yup
  • Are we broke – or in debt up to our eyeballs – because we suck with money? Almost a guarantee
  • Are we alone and lonely because we’re horrible at relationships? Absolutely
  • Are we deeply and fundamentally flawed? You bet your ass

How To Reset After Failure

  1. Stop Thinking of Failures as Finish-Points, and Start Thinking of Them as  Training Tools
    1. If you’re working on getting better at shooting free throws in basketball, how many missed shots before you give up and go home? Five shots? Ten? Twenty? Of course not! You take hundreds and hundreds of shots and you miss the basket constantly. Then as you shoot you continue to hone what works and what doesn’t.
    2. Same thing with any skill. You suck at the beginning because EVERYBODY sucks at the beginning. You get better by repeatedly working through the things you’re doing wrong until you get them right.
  2. Don’t Personalize Failure
    1. This is one of the biggest mistakes that people make when they fail. When you’re trying to get a new job and you flub the interview it’s so easy to say “I failed that interview and therefore I’m a failure as a person.”
    2. Not only is personalizing failure very damaging to your confidence, IT SABOTAGES YOUR ABILITY TO ACCOMPLISH YOUR GOALS!!!
    3. Take yourself – your ego, your self-esteem – out of the equation. Focus on fixing the PROBLEM, rather than worrying about your feelings.
    4. Once you solve the problem, you’ll feel more confident, more successful and more capable of solving other, harder problems.
  3. Change Your Mindset from Failure = Bad to Failure = Learning
    1. Highly successful people understand that failure is not a sign that you’ll never succeed, failure is a necessary step in the learning process. 
    3. Michael Jordan: “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” 

Conclusion – Unrealistic Expectations

  • Failing sucks. There’s no doubt about it. It hurts, it’s hard and it causes damage. Sometimes that damage lasts for years – or even a lifetime.
  • NOBODY wants to fail but EVERYBODY fails.
  • One of the biggest problems with the modern social media world is that nobody posts their failures – only their successes.
  • In a social-media world it becomes very easy to believe that EVERYONE ELSE IS KILLING IT – solid job, hot girl, lots of friends, adventurous life, great body, happy kids, etc, etc – AND YOU SUCK.
    • This is a big fat fucking lie.
  • Here’s the biggest secret in life that nobody is talking about:
    • Everybody fails every single day. Everybody.
    • As the great philosopher Wesley says in Princess Bride: “Life is pain, highness. Anyone who says differently is selling something.”
    • The people who are TRULY successful in life understand and accept that failure is not only inevitable, it is the payment you must make in order to get the things you want.

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