Fail Successfully

This is my belief, but...

This is my belief, but…

So, here is another advanced comp assignment I did. Another timed essay. Here it is, complete as I submitted it. I wrote it on why failing is more advantageous than success. Hopefully it is informative and helpful, maybe even encouraging. Enjoy. 🙂

Few would not shudder at the thought of making mistakes. These mysterious beings cast the shadows on an otherwise perfectly illuminated history of success. While one should avoid mistakes, as they do have their negative consequences, these little devils of failure stand a chance of teaching more than triumph could. When one trips up, it leaves a metaphorical, perhaps literal, wound that lasts a long time. On the other hand, avoiding the pitfall can grant complete obliviousness to the possibility of a mistake. Falling down also spurs the desire to get back up again, to prove a simple stumble does not mean the end of the world. And if anyone suffers from a case of egotism, a does of failure will set that straight quickly. Thus if someone asked me which teaches more, I would reply, “Mistakes teach best of all.” However, whether I prefer failure to success might lend for a different discussion entirely.

One easily remembers a mistake, but success soon loses itself in memory. People prove this fact everyday. They demonstrate this in how they criticize others. As a race, humans focus more on errors and shortcomings than they do on successes and achieved goals. Making a mistake the first time, correcting it, and avoiding that same mistake the second time locks the concept unforgettably in memory. Results of the mistake also teach potent lessons. I used to struggle greatly with anger management, and would make rash decisions in fits of uncontrollable rage. Later, having cooled down, I would regret these choices with a bitterness of soul. But they stuck with me permanently, and now I merely have to think of a former error to halt myself on the brink of fury.

Mistakes spur the desire to improve oneself. Constant raising of the bar of standard keeps society moving forward. One source of this motivation, for it takes great effort to push oneself to greater heights, derives itself from mistakes. Any self-respecting individual would desire to recover from a defeat. Thomas Alva Edison, one of the greatest inventors of all time, demonstrated this. Reportedly trying over a thousand times to create the lightbulb, all who enjoy the electric light in their homes today owe him thanks. Thinking of all the failures Edison overcame to bring the world luminance should inspire anyone to pick him or herself up again.

Everyone has, at least once in his or her life, encountered someone who has elevated him or herself onto a platform of superiority, otherwise known as a prideful person. However, mistakes act as powerful humblers to bring these people down. In a flurry of success lurks pride, but with failure comes humility. Messing up serves to lower one’s image of self and raise the achievements of others. It becomes easier to locate failings when they actually trip a person up. I remember taking an exam years ago full of self-confidence. To anyone who asked me how I thought I did, I boasted that I had surely done well. Imagine my shame when the results came back and I had not progressed to the second round. While I did not completely flunk the test, this humbling reminder carried me off my elevated throne instantly.

Many could accuse me of heavily biasing my discussion on errors unless I go over their cons. I and many others wear the badge of perfectionist proudly. Mistakes in my work cause great disappointment and angst. If allowed to go too far, the consequences of tripping up can lower one’s self-esteem and confidence. This could have drastic results. Overall one should not fear mistakes, since they serve to bring greater good than evil, but avoid them. If mistakes come, I would advise everyone to accept them and use them to their full potential, but do not deliberately hunt them down. In essence, one should fail successfully.

Tours yruly


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