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How Many Times Will YOU Try Before You Admit Failure?

How many goes does a parent give the average baby when it’s learning to walk? I think 5 is a reasonable number, don’t you? Maybe a couple more if they seem to be a slow learner. What would you say?

You’d probably tell me to stop being ridiculous.

Obviously a baby is allowed to – and will – keep trying until they can walk, right? They might fall down hundreds of times first, often hurting themselves in the process! But still they get up again, and usually right away. Interestingly, no-one is scoffing at them or telling them they clearly aren’t cut out for this stuff.

To the contrary, right? When we see a child trying to move from one stage to the next, we focus exclusively on the positive aspects – on the fact that they’re trying, on how far they did go, on how clever they are, and we tell them to keep trying. If you’ve ever watched a baby trying to do or achieve something – be it crawl or walk, or simply get to the object they want – you’ll know that the term ‘steel-eyed focus’ doesn’t apply only to adults. In fact, it probably applies less so to adults.

Babies never give up.

so why do you?

At what point do you think you and I lose this sense of pure determination to do with something we want to do or be? Think about it – how many times do you typically try to do something before you admit failure?

Perhaps you might think you’re accepting reality. “I gave it all I could”, you might say. Or – “But I really tried everything”.

NO.

If you’d tried everything then you would have been successful.

You might think I’m being an unrealistic dreamer. You might be jumping at the bit to point out tons of examples of people who definitely cannot achieve or be ‘a’, ‘b’, or ‘c’. Should you do so, I could, of course, respond by listing tons of counter-arguments; of people who’ve achieved an impossible dream despite all odds.

But why argue over it? Wouldn’t you simply rather use these people as your inspiration and driving force?

it’s easy to justify

You can always find something or someone to help you justify giving up. That’s easy. The positive encouragement that we so willingly heap on babies seems to drift away after a sad few years in many cases. By the time kinder hits there seems to be at least an even mix of can’ts and cans in terms of what the child might expect to achieve.

Think back over your own life. At what age do you think you stopped believing you were invincible? At what age did your childhood dreams become silly fantasies that you’d turn your nose up at? How many times in your life have you decided that it’s better to ‘just be realistic’ or ‘accept that you’re never going to do or be ‘x’?

Are you doing it now?

if colonel sanders can do it then why can’t you?!

Yesterday I listened to an old podcast I have from Tony Robbins. I LOVE this man. I love everything about him, most especially his somewhat OTT voice. I used to listen to his audios when I walked to walk at 6am – what an energising way to start the day!

Aside from the point on letting babies try to walk until they actually can walk, there was one other story Tony told which really stood out –

Colonel Sanders tried to get his chicken into 1009 different stores before he was successful. This was while he was in his mid-sixties! And let’s be honest. There are simply countless similar stories of perseverance. Some of the greatest inventions of our time are built on such stories. These are not extraordinary people by nature! These are simply people who have a goal, who are focused, and who do not give up. They are consistent in their actions, and persistent in the dreams.

When I started Body Incredible, one thing that I remember saying to myself is that even though I didn’t really know anything about blogging, I believed in my writing abilities. I made myself a promise to just keep going with this blog; to consistently put up content. I remember thinking that if I was consistent with it would eventually get somewhere. It would have to. And I’m happy to say it has 🙂

Sure, there are loads of bloggers who have more readers than I in a shorter period of time. Just as there are loads of people out there who get in shape or achieve their dreams much faster than you.

So what? Does that mean you’ll never get there?

could there be an extraordinary person lurking inside YOU?

So be honest now. Could you be one of those ordinary people who just keeps going until they achieve something extraordinary? Or have you told yourself that this is your last attempt to lose weight/get fit/run a marathon/eat healthy/find love/follow your passion/deal with your issues?

Don’t you think that allowing even the possibility of failure into your mind could be preventing you from ever truly reaching your dreams? If you wouldn’t tell a baby to just give up and deal with the fact that they’re going to have to crawl forever, then why on earth would you accept anything less for yourself?

let’s get personal

Do you have a dream that you’d like to brush off and take up again? Or perhaps something that you were wondering if you should just give up on and now think maybe you’d rather believe in after all? Please share!

 

Life is Now. Press Play.

Kat x

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One Comment

  1. Clare says:

    Hi Kat, Love this post it is sooo true, we do give our toddlers lots of encouragement and then as they grow up we kind of wean them off of it when we should keep it up a little longer until they can do it for themselves.
    I will get personal here, in my own situation I have been trying for a few years to lose weight but its just not happening. All too often I start with enthusiasm and when I dont get quick results I give up. Then I start all over again. I do exercise three times a week and I do love my food, but I am eating healthily and cutting out the junk. I refuse to weigh food and count calories by the way, been there & done that. I have resigned myself to the fact that I need to be patient and ‘just do it’.
    I will not give up, I will keep at it and when I do eventually get to my goal weight I will be over the moon and by then it will be a lifestyle, which is probably the way it should be!
    Thanks for your inspiration and motivation 😉
    Clare

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