March 19

Only those who dare to
fail greatly can ever
achieve greatly.

Robert Kennedy


Today's Meditation:

I don't know if I've ever "achieved greatly" yet, but I certainly have dared to fail greatly.  I've never seen potential failure as a deterrent, and for that I'm grateful.  Potential failure, for me, is a motivator, something that makes me try even harder to avoid its clutches.  I have failed, but that's okay.

For example, once I started running across the country.  I made it 1,000 miles in four weeks, but by then an ankle injury that happened two weeks into the run became too severe, and I felt that I risked permanent injury if I were to continue.  So on my attempted run across the country, I failed.  But in my mind, the most important thing was that I had run so far in so little time, and it was an amazing accomplishment.  Some people couldn't understand why I felt so positive about "giving up" and "failing," but I knew that they didn't understand what achievement is all about.

Not everyone is meant to do things that will show up in the headlines.  Not all of us are destined for greatness as the world knows "greatness."  But we all have the potential to achieve greatly in our own worlds, in our own spheres of influence, and that's something that's extremely important.  But the most important thing of all is to remember that when we undertake some sort of project, when we dare greatly to do something that intimidates us or frightens us, we may fail.  And that's okay.

Too many people think that just because they dare to do something amazing, the mere act of daring guarantees that they'll succeed.  But the truth is, sometimes we fail, and that's okay.  What we do with the failure is what's important.  And as those failures add up, we get closer and closer to that great achievement that just may be one of the defining accomplishments of our lives.

Questions to consider:

Do you dare to fail greatly?  What kind of activity or task or project might you undertake that holds the risk of failure? 

Have you ever achieved greatly?  How did it feel?  How can you get that feeling back?

From whom do we learn to fear failure?  Are those the teachers that we want to have great influence over our lives and decisions?

For further thought:

Failure is a reality; we all fail at times and itís painful when we do.
But itís better to fail while striving for something wonderful,
challenging, adventurous and uncertain than to say, ďI donít want
to try, because I may not succeed completely.Ē

Jimmy Carter


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