As you probably know, I’m not usually one to make resolutions. Last year, I chose a word to live by, “Nourish,” and I felt that was a valuable effort. More on that in a later post, maybe. But I’ve been inspired to resolve something this year: Risk Failure in a Visible Way.
The other day, I felt particularly challenged by the closing words of Ted Dintersmith in an article in the Washington Post.
As I reflect back on my past, I was pretty much a hoop jumper. Now, I wake up each morning with conviction. I’m trying things I never would have tried, learning about areas I never paid attention to, making more mistakes in a week than I used to make in a year, and risking failure in a visible way.
As a fellow former hoop-jumper, I’ve always been intensely embarrassed about screwing up, especially in public. I even freak out about playing piano in front of other people. And, I’m an accomplished pianist. This year, I want to risk making mistakes in order to get to a place I’ve never been before. And, I want the kids to see me doing so. Of course, risking failure in a visible way doesn’t mean doing something stupid on purpose. But, this year, a year in which I’m already facing important decisions about what to do with a finished novel, what kind of full-time work to explore, and how to build upon, retire, or tranform this website and its summer companion, I’m not going to worry so much about whether or not there’s a hoop and how I’m jumping. In the infamous words of ELO, “I’ll take the fall!” We, all of us, fall down. And, dusting yourself off without blaming everything and everyone else around you [and, hence, making yourself look like a REAL moron] is a pretty important skill to hone.
So, cheers to 2016!
And, Happy New Year, everyone!