Saturday, October 03, 2009

Elizabeth Esther's Saturday Evening Blog Post, Vol. 2

Elizabeth Esther ( has a great idea to encourage the readers of her blog to share their own blogs: Pick one post from your blog, and post a link to it for other readers. This gives us all an opporutunity to learn more about each other, and to invite others to our blog by picking one of our favorite posts to demonstrate our flash blogging skills. :)

I chose the post "The Success of Failure". This post was written out of a bit of pain, and the struggle to see my life not as a series of failures, but as a series of life saying to me, "No, this isn't where you are supposed to be, so I'm closing this door so you are free to explore other things."

Hmm...Adopting that kind of logic is easier said than done, when we live in a world that doesn't like to admit that the road we traveled turned out to be the wrong road. We don't like to call it an inviitation to try a different road. We like to call it failure.

Which is interesting, because our society has come to value science so highly that we almost refuse to believe anything that doesn't have some sort of scientfic support. In science, if an experiement fails, the scientists don't look at it as an abysmal failure. They see it as an indication that they need to try something else in order to achieve the result they are looking for. Furthermore, they look at the outcome of the "failed" experiment, glean from it what they can in terms of new information, and take another go at things utilizing what they learned from the "failed" experiment.

Yet, in life, in our science-dependent culture, we see our failures as a reason to crumple into a self-loathing heap and sulk for awhile. Could you imagine if the scientists who were working on effective cancer treatments would have done that? "Well, we didn't achieve the results we were hoping for. We're useless. Stupid. Probably too stupid to every get this figured out. We were so foolish to think we could ever do this..."

Seems silly, doesn't it? Yet, this is what I...and many, many when we encounter a failure in our lives.

So, let's stop calling it failure. Let's call it...well, I have no succinct term for it, but let's think of it as an experiment that didn't yield the results we were hoping for, but taught us a lot about where we need to go from here.

Great post! While reading it, I thought about the science of meteorology. When I was growing up weather prediction was a joke because of its amazing inaccuracies but the meteorologists didn't give up. Instead, they continued to gather data from their "failed" predictions and now their forecasts are amazingly accurate.

Everything in our lives, even our supposed failures, has made us who we are today. They were all steps in our journey.

Thanks for inviting me here. You've got a great blog. I love your thoughts.
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