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August 3, 2014

Fail Fast!

I made a few mistakes this week. I did a report that was needed for our management and I didn’t do some of it correctly.   Fortunately when we were reviewing it prior to the presentation we noticed the parts that were wrong. I changed them prior to the meeting and everything went well. I won’t be making those same mistakes on that part of the report again.

My daughter was reviewing math this week as well getting ready to go back to school. She had already learned the concept (or at least was “taught” it in school – very quickly – that is a whole other story) but needed to review the concept again in order to get it. She couldn’t remember how to do it, so my wife was re-teaching it to her – and she was getting very frustrated! She put down her pencil and walked off at one point because she kept getting it wrong. Finally, after my wife calmed her down and brought her back to the table, she again got it wrong a few times, but then figured out from her mistakes how it was supposed to be done. She now has a full understanding of how to do the math concept.

How well do you do at failing? Getting something wrong? How do you react?

Our schools teach us that we should always get things right. No errors. No coloring outside the lines. No mistakes.

Our society teaches us that messing up is bad. Making mistakes means you don’t know what you are doing. Failing when you try to do something means you will never achieve. You should get it right the first time.

A Real Christian Businessman knows that failing is the ONLY WAY THAT WE LEARN. I know when I first tried to ride a bike, or roller skate, or make a right handed lay up (I’m left handed of course) that I crashed or fell or missed the shot many more times than I got it right. Now though, I can ride a bike no problem – without even thinking about it. I can still put on roller skates and make it around the rink (!!!). I can still do right handed lay ups very well (and my opponents aren’t expecting it either!).

The point is that without failure we wouldn’t have any progress. We wouldn’t have any learning. The great Thomas Edison was good at failure. Look at all of the things he brought to this world? He kept on failing too.

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“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” – Thomas A. Edison

Be encouraged to keep learning once you fail. Don’t give up. Learn from the situation. Don’t repeat the mistake. It is how we are wired to learn and will only make us better.

“I can do all things through Christ who give me strength” Phil 4:13 (NIV)

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