Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Failure is ok. I repeat: it's OK to fail!

So I had a bad day.

Last Sunday I attended a practice management symposium where the first speaker opened up with the line "failure is ok. I repeat: it's ok to fail". The fact that this successful individual who built a currently million-dollar practice from the ground up felt the need to make that statement the very first point he drove home to us students just starting our careers is making him my saving grace at the moment. My mom, my aunt, my cousin, and friends constantly assure me things are going to be ok when I encounter the big bumps in the road. I take comfort in knowing that I'm cared about and they're there for me, but I don't usually believe them......but if HE said it's ok, it must really be ok!

How did this guy know that that's exactly what I needed to hear at the closing of one chapter and the rough beginning of a new one? Could it be the norm that each of us in the room-all accepted students of a selective and rigorous academic program who had to meet a laundry list of criteria-is experiencing failure and doubting our abilities simultaneously all the while convinced we're the only ones that managed to mess up that badly? Was he in my very shoes at this stage of life? He had to have failed somewhere to know to say that...right?

I've underperformed today. It took a million failed attempts and some dangerous maneuvering to determine a patient's intraocular pressure. Even then I barely got it. It was frustrating! It made me nervous, flustered, and brought me anxiety. It brought down my confidence level a couple of notches.....and I even felt some desperation and sadness. It wasn't just about today, but more of a culmination of bad performing.

I'm going to believe that it's ok! People who don't fail aren't perfect, but more likely they're people that don't try and push themselves...and God knows I've pushed myself to all kinds of limits. So it's logical that I have more failures on my plate. If I can choose to have one skill down successfully it would be the ability to accept things and move on!

I think having a public "it's ok to fail" campaign would be a healthy thing for the masses, so what did you fail today?


Goofy Girl said...

I failed at doing this summary of a large planning meeting. Ugh. :( Makes me feel crappy too for not getting it done.

secratea said...

i have failed to get today's readings done according to schedule.. i did that yesterday as well... i fail in time management--big time... but still, I know that i can catch up over the weekend and i guess i will.

i know this sounds cliche, but i believe that determination is the key to success. failure is ok as long as it doesn't stop you from achieving a goal.
good luck!

Anonymous said...

If it is OK, why am I feeling so terrible?
I guess it is ok if you know how to face it, learn from it and keep moving but if you dwell on it every single day, drag it forever and create more mistakes then it is a disaster..
I know somebody who did exactly that, but 3eib am not naming names loool well, let's say, i learned my lesson the hard way..

asoom said...

goofy, but I'm sure you'll learn from this and be more prepared next time so don't feel crappy!

secratea, "failure is ok as long as it doesn't stop you from achieving a goal." Totally! and it can be used to your advantage, failure can be used as renewed motivation to achieve your goal.

Noura, well like me you're probably feeling so terrible because you haven't accepted that it's yourself from that by believing it's ok! People can give you great advice your whole entire life but sometimes you're just not going to learn something until you've made that mistake first!

Hamza said...

I think this is a sign from God that you should get married and sit at home. :P

Maher said...

omg..i am waiting for my grades..hopefully i wont fail any of them! inshallah! :s

asoom said...

Hamza, unfortunately I have very little domestic skill so I don't know if sitting at home is the sign God is trying to communicate here

Maher, inshallah khair, taminna!