When you mess up

Okay now, this happens to all of us. We set out to accomplish something, be it a dream, an ambition, an intent… And we fail. It feels like an epic fail. Like we’re left with a huge mess afterwards and completely drained. We all hit rock bottom at some point in life. There is nothing romantic about failing and being down in the pits. What should be applauded though, is the people who climb out of that mud pit by their own means. Now that is something to be proud of.

Dorothy and I have failed big time recently :

  • Dorothy lost her court case to Tatyana.
  • I have failed miserably as a human being in trying to help those around me.

Definition of failure

What exactly is failure ? In our society, we identify failure as a broken marriage, divorce, losing our job, being jobless, and ultimately poverty. Now compared to third world countries, our failings are in fact just very soft bounces over a carpeted floor. Yet when those things happen to us, we feel gutted and unable to proceed. Deep depression ensues.

What keeps me going is that the ultimate failure I could possibly experience is to go live under a bridge with my children and eat cat food. It’s not going to happen. So let me get my sugar together and make this work somehow.

Financial loss

Dorothy’s failing is essentially a great financial loss. She has to pay twelve thousand euros for a mistake that her employee made. Is it fair? The Belgian court system obviously thought it was. So all that’s left now is for Dorothy to lick her wounds and start thinking creatively. She has to come back full force. She has to find new and alternative ways to generate income. And she will. I know she’s brainstorming loads of unconventional ways to make up for her loss. But something will eventually click.

What’s important here for Dorothy to learn is that she has to run her business in a different way than she has been doing. That means becoming a better judge of character. Being clear and specific about what she desires her employees to do for her. What is acceptable behaviour and what not. If the line is transgressed, then there is no second, third and fourth chance. There’s the door.

Emotional loss

Losing friendships is a hard one. I’ve seen a few more friendships ending this year, and the year before, and even the year before that. Why is that ? It’s because people put different expectations and different values on friendship. It depends on the agenda you have running too.

  • A girlfriend who is jealous because you’ve finally got your sugar together and doing things you like, like laying the tarot cards, that friend is not a friend. Never was. Especially when said-friend then messages you with “but I’m leaving the door open for our friendship”. This my dears translates into “I’ll be waiting here for you to come and apologize”. I’m just thinking be careful you don’t catch cold; it’s quite drafty you know.
  • When you hurt a friend because you thought you knew what was best for them and you tried to fix things for them. I’m guilty. I’ve done this. I went and got involved in a situation I should have just kept my nose out of. And I got caught up in pain and hurt and negativity which was not mine. And for which I’m neither skilled nor qualified to deal with. I felt bad. And worse, I hurt and lost a dear friend.

The important thing to do here is to assess where you went wrong and take responsibility for this. But also acknowledge your intent, and the role other people played. Get up off the floor, dust yourself off. Make sure you first get yourself back up and running and in tip-top shape before you make your next move.

Unfortunately darlings, there is a point in saying to look out for number one first. If mama isn’t happy, then she can’t make anyone else around her happy. It’s true.

At the end of the day

At the end of the day, the important thing is to live a good life. Those who never do anything, who never step out of their comfort zone, well they’re never going to fail now are they? So a big round of applause to you if you did fail today. Because the benefits of failing is that you are forced to re-evaluate what you want, where you’re going and what you need to change if you are going to reach your destination in glory.

As the saying goes in Fight Club : “We’re consumers. We are the byproducts of a lifestyle obsession. Murder, crime, poverty, these things don’t concern me. What concerns me are celebrity magazines, television with 500 channels, some guy’s name on my underwear. Rogaine, Viagra, Olestra.”

It’s extreme, but an eyeopener. Especially since “murder, crime, poverty” are in fact the things that constitute our failings. Replace them with “divorce, job loss, poverty”. You see? So come on girls, let’s challenge the status quo.

You can do it!


Where did you fail today and what were your lessons learned ? Let me know in the comments below.




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