Beautiful Failure

Bullshit! I think it’s utter bullshit to romanticise failure; to paint it in some beautiful, nostalgic light which radiates hope in moments of disappointment and despair. And yes, I know there are hundreds of thousands of speeches and quotes and memes that tell us how great it is to embrace failure and I’m sure these concepts were coined by some ver brilliant minds, but I just can’t buy the whole “failure is beautiful” argument. I think if we were honest, truly honest with ourselves, we’d admit that failure is a stench we’d be happy to let our nose live without.

Have I failed at anything before? Yes. Have I learnt from my failures? Yes. Have some of my failures made me stronger? Oh, definitely. After answering yes to the last three questions do I think failure is beautiful? Absolutely not!, Hell no! NO NO NO NO NO!!!

I can admit that my response to my failures has produced beautiful results but failure in and of itself was never beautiful. Failure is dark and dismal, it has the potential to place you at the bottom of a pit and force you to find ways out or die. Failure is having your foot stuck in a bear trap with a pack of wolves quickly approaching and you feeling every thump of your heart in your chest while willing your lungs to intake air so you don’t faint from a lack of oxygen and succumb to what may very well be imminent death. Failure crushes you, even if only momentarily, and forces you into survival mode. So yeah, the results of bouncing back after you’ve failed, you being an overcomer and not allowing failure to define and determine your destiny, is beautiful, but failure, in an of itself, is ugly.

If I were to have my way I’d never fail, at anything. I’d be successful at every single thing I become a part of and I’d do a lot of great things because my successes would motivate me to do more and take on greater tasks than I did before. I know what you’re thinking:

“Akeela your failures can have that same effect if you let it. Once you’ve overcome failures you’ll know you have the power to overcome obstacles and that can motivate you to do better!”

True. Very true actually, but trying again after I’ve failed means focusing time and energy on accomplishing something I could have already accomplished if I hadn’t failed in the first place. And I’d never choose to continuously work on perfecting one thing instead of being able to focus that same time and energy on accomplishing something else, something greater even.

Am I saying it’s all doom and gloom after we’ve failed and we should never pick up the pieces and try again? Oh gosh no! I believe quite the opposite. I think when we fail, and our butts hit rock bottom, and we look around and only see darkness, and we feel hopeless, we should centre ourselves and try again. I think we should flip failure the bird and really kick ass at what we’ve set our hearts on doing. We should learn the lessons that failure teach, we should allow our journey to help develop our characters, but with all things being equal, we should acknowledge that failure is what it is, an ugly part of our human experience that we’d be better off without.

I’ve failed, I’ve tried again and I’ve failed again a thousand times over. I’ve failed, I’ve tried again and I’ve overcome a thousand times more. Failure has brought me both laughter and tears. Because of it, I’ve grown and evolved. I appreciate the potential for greatness after failure but I cannot, and I will not ever, regard failure as beautiful.


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