Blog by: Jessica Bein
I’m currently reading “Failing Forward” by John C. Maxwell. I had one current theme in my discussions with riders at the recent Youth Nationals, and it was, “Don’t be afraid to make a mistake.”
Kids, and all humans, have an unreasonable pursuit for perfection. No one wants to make a mistake. Everyone wants to be perfect, and everyone wants to be the best. That can’t happen every time, every ride, because there are so many uncontrollable variables that can, and will, hinder perfection, every time, every ride.
I don’t think I learned this until I started judging. I realized that certain trainers won consistently, not because their friend may have been judging, but usually because they were really good. The cream rises to the top. They cracked the code. They deserve to be rewarded.
There is a recipe for success, and it’s not a road paved with perfection. It’s a very bumpy road, sometimes paved, often with potholes.
So, I will share again that the most successful riders at Nationals also made the most mistakes. Read it again. OUR MOST SUCCESSFUL RIDERS AT NATIONALS ALSO MADE THE MOST MISTAKES. Most people didn’t pay attention to that. They had the most penalties; they had the most errors; and they made the biggest mistakes. The difference is how they managed them and the mental game they used to overcome the challenge.
Below are 15 points made in the book, “Failing Forward.”
1. Realize there is one major difference between average people and achievers. The difference is in how they respond to failure.
2. Learn a new definition of failure.
3. Remove the “you” from failure. Don’t take it personally.
4. Take action and reduce your fear.
5. Change your response to failure by accepting responsibility.
6. Don’t let failure from outside get inside you.
7. Say good-bye to yesterday.
8. Change yourself and your world changes.
9. Get over yourself and start giving yourself.
10. Find the benefit in every bad experience.
11. If at first you do succeed, try something harder.
12. Learn from a bad experience and make it a good experience.
13. Work on the weakness that weakens you.
14. Understand there’s not much difference between failure and success.
15. Get up, get over it, get going.
Successful people never dwell on past difficulties. If you’re not failing, you probably aren’t moving forward. Prepare yourself to pay the price of the occasional setback in exchange for the progress you’re making. Learn from all your experiences, whether good or bad, because nothing can teach you better than a bad experience. Fail early, fail often, and fail forward.
I challenge each person to try it. Essentially, PUSH UNTIL YOU FAIL. That will make everyone uncomfortable, but I mean it. Extend the trot until you find the limit. Run and stop, until you find the limit. Lope as slow as you can, until you find the limit.
If you break gait, great, you found the end. If you run and stop, and then it gets ugly, GREAT, YOU’RE ALMOST THERE!
The other side of that failure is your greatest victory.
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