Last post, I shared with you that fact that I had decided to throw away the months of work and writing I had been doing for my fourth book. It was, in some sense, a failure. It did not meet the expectation that I had for what I wanted to share with the world. Does this make me a failure? I really do not feel like it. The project was. I will still write a fourth book. It will be different than the one I was writing. It will be better.

Think of any great accomplishment we have had in life. Learning to walk. Learning to speak. Getting in shape. Starting a relationship. Finding the love of our lives. Which one of those was a linear process? Which one did we accomplish flawlessly? I am not sure about you, but my total is something slightly less than one. I fell a million times learning to walk. Some days I feel that I am still learning to communicate with those in my life. Getting in shape? That is a life-long journey. My relationship is something that took a lot of work on both of our ends and continues to do so as we navigate the challenge of two different people living one life.

Society’s definition of failure is wholly inaccurate. If it were, no babies would ever learn to walk without a terrible self-image. People would give up on each other before their love had a chance to fully blossom. To, of course, authors would never complete their next book. Failure is not an outcome unless we choose to make it so. It is, more accurately stated, a stepping stone. Next time you feel like a failure, ask yourself if you were failing, or merely learning. Are you going to give up, or begin again more intelligently?

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