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The End of Failure

In an episode of Mitch Joel’s Six Pixels of Separation podcast I listened to a few weeks ago, Seth Godin was on and he asked what would happen if you “Failed at a blog post?” Thinking about failure like that made it seem ridiculous, and as he continued I wondered if it’s paid too much attention?

37 Signals wrote in their book, Rework, that “Failure is not a rite of passage.” Failure stories shouldn’t be about teaching people that failure tempers you, or that by failing you’re closer to success. Those kinds of stories are about making people less afraid of failure by promising them that it will make them more successful in the future.

A better message would be that failure is insignificant because it happens to anyone who tries anything worthwhile.

You notice how you never hear failure stories from someone who has only ever failed? It doesn’t happen. People who do what it takes to fail eventually succeed.

Failure and success are always going to happen, to everyone, but that doesn’t mean that we’ll always have to think about it in the same way. Let’s take a different approach.

You should feel proud about having many failures and successes to show for all of the things that you’ve started.

Don’t celebrate failure, celebrate starting lots of cool stuff.

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