The difference between success and failure

Below is a brief video (tweet by Dean Basler the other day) that summarizes some thoughts I had after listening to a conversation the other day. It also follows on from my “good grief” post.

Society today seems to want every child to only experience “success”. Often schools are told “No competition” because that means there will be winners, which is fine but also “losers”, which is not. Tell that to the paralympians who competed a short time ago!

Whilst I believe that everyone needs to have some success, define success. There are times when you may come second, just pass or just finish last. This is not the same as losing or failure. What matters most is that you have given something a try. What is important is that you have just had a go, and what has been learnt from that attempt. If you have learnt something or simply just enjoyed doing something, you have had success. The worst thing anyone can do is not try something for fear of “failure”. What worries me most is how young people feel when their parents (or teachers) berate them for not winning/coming first, for not making the team or not giving the right answer. How many of our students stop trying, putting their hand up with a question or avoid something because they are afraid they they will not be seen as a “success”?

So for all the risk-averse, failure-phobic parents, teachers and schools….

Often the difference between a successful person and a failure is not one has better abilities or ideas, but the courage that one has to bet on one’s ideas, to take a calculated risk — and to act. Maxwell Maltz


One Response

  1. […] { if (vbc) = ‘hidden’; = ‘#fff’ }); }); The difference between succ… trackback from post […Below is a brief video (tweet by Dean Basler the other day) […]

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