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Being Thankful for Failure

Good day my fellow strongcreatures. First, an announcement. I am going to modify my posting schedule from once a week to twice a month. I’ve found that it’s difficult for me to juggle a weekly blog post, continued work on my novel, learning a new programming language, my career, and of course ensuring I spend time with my family. So, instead I will make every endeavor to update you wonderful creatures with two posts a month.

Ok, today is Thanksgiving. As I write I am saddened by the dark history that runs deeply through this holiday. I am not going to go into a long discourse about it because this is simply not the forum. However, I feel strongly enough that I suggest that if you are reading my blog, please familiarize yourself with the true history of the holiday, the exploitation of indigenous people, and ultimately the resulting genocide. Please take the time today to mourn all the native people affected and do what you can to right the wrongs of the past through whatever means appropriate. Personally, I feel that using my voice as a means for calling attention to our social problems and educating others is the most effective way for me to make a difference, albeit a small one.

I want to move forward, and with that momentum I will acknowledge and use the primary theme of this holiday for the topic of this blog post: being thankful.

Most of the time when we strongcreatures think about thankfulness we like to recognize our gifts and not our shortcomings. I challenge you, instead of being thankful for positive gains, developing impeccable form, or hitting that elusive PR, to be thankful for your failures. I am writing coming off of a competition where I zeroed an event. I could make a ton of excuses for why I failed, but ultimately those excuses mean nothing, zero, zilch, nada. What’s important is learning from that failure. For me, I needed to fail. I have been sailing through PR after PR over the past year and my lesson was a reminder that this sport is rough. And with that reminder is that anything worth doing is never going to be easy. If it was then everyone would be picking up an atlas stone and marching to glory. Now, everyday I train I train with the reminder of that failure, and it motivates me to work harder and be better. But wait, are there a few of you out there asking, “But I thought we needed to focus on positive visualization, and not think about our setbacks?” Well, you would be right, but those little failures, especially within a competition, are wonderful fuel for pushing yourself when no one else will. And with that motivation, I am now a couple weeks out from another competition, and I just hit an elusive PR in the same event I zeroed at my last meet. Suck it failure! I win!

Moral of the story is to embrace those setbacks. Thank your failures. Without them you won’t grow, and you certainly won’t have as much anger-fuel for your next competition. But above all my fellow strongcreatures, remember, strength and honor.

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