Today All Groan Up is honored to welcome a good friend of mine and great writer, Kevin Thomas. He writes about travel, sports, life, and all the little things in between that tie them all together at kevinjohnthomas.com. Follow him on Twitter here.
Failing magnificently might be the most important thing a person can do.
At least that’s my hope.
I’m going to write a book: “An NBA Lovers Incomplete Guide To…” It’s going to be hard. Real hard. I quit my comfy job and did a Kickstarter campaign to fund the first chunk of it, but after that, the future is cloudy and uncertain. Failure is for once a very real option. People have told me to keep the job, keep the benefits.
But if you have the chance, if you’re like me and lucky enough to get this far without a disease or life-altering medical issue, I say DAMN THE BENEFITS. Forget the perceptions others have of you. Take a risk. Dare to fail. And once you’re off doing that thing that drives you the most in your life, don’t be surprised if the benefits end up finding you.
At least that’s my hope.
Because if I don’t live and breathe where failure is a very real possibility, then I know now I’ll never really live. Here are the five steps I’m following to fail magnificently.
Photo: Johnno – Creative Commons | Design: Paul Angone
1. Listen to that Idea in the Back of Your Head: You know it’s there. You know want to do it. What’s stopping you? The fear of who? Rejection? Criticism? None of it matters. Only the idea. Only you and your all-out pursuit of it.
2. Test Your Idea: How do trusted friends, business-savy people, and people who are where you want to be, respond to the idea? The idea may not be perfect at the beginning, but talking it over, refining it, shaping it, can get it there. Use those people around you that love you and want to engage with you to get the idea to where it needs to be. Buying someone a cup of coffee or beer can do wonders…
3. Take the First Step: What step can you take that will push you towards the point of no return? Once you take that step, there’s no going back. And that’s right where you want to be. Forcing yourself to make it happen. Give yourself tunnel-vision. Nothing else matters. If I didn’t quit my job, I would’ve backed down many times already, but there’s no going back. Shiz will happen. Cars will break down. Deodarant will run out. Ramen will start to suck. But these roadblocks can all be overcome. Don’t let them be bigger than they really are. Take a deep breath, and dive in head first.
4. Execute: This is not easy. This is not something to be taken lightly. Give your all to your project. It’s worth it. You’re worth it. If you’re not giving your all to it, why are you doing it? You know that feeling you have when you leave your “job” – that unfulfilled, unsatisfied feeling you loathe – don’t let that be a part of your world anymore.
5. Do Not Be Afraid to Fail or Succeed: You will probably fail. Accept it. You will get back up. Learn from what went wrong the time before, and go for it again.
But what if you succeed? What will it cost? It’s not the fear of failure that stops most of us from trying something big, it’s the fear of success. Because deep down we know just how much work it will take to make that dream happen. But the only things worth living for are worth dying for as well. So go out and fail, my friends, fail magnificently. Your parents will be so proud.