Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Dear Sons Failing Is Fundamental

Dear Sons;

Failing truly is fundamental so when you do fail and may feel like often I want you to welcome it the same you would a win-fall. I know you must think mom's screws are more loose than usual but they are not. We've had the talks about doing your best and giving everything your all if you want to succeed but I don't ever want you to forget that a huge part of succeeding is knowing how to fail.

The world will tell you that failing is bad but it's not. Failing is good and it's a part of getting to your goal. The world has become a stupid place, where you're told that if you make a mistake, even the first time around you're a failure. That if you try over and over but don't get to to a specific goal then you are not worth anything. Well you know what mom has to say about that right. The world can take a long walk off a short pier.

Don't EVER get on the merry-go-round hamster wheel that society has created for knuckleheads. Trust your momma when she tells you that life is not what you see on your screens or your apps. It's so much better! You see, no matter what you do in life, if you see the positives in your failures, you will always find joy and true success!

Ok, so here's how it works. You're going to be in a race on field day at school and you are set to run against three of your classmates. You do the three things I always tell you to do: you plan, you prepare and you practice! So, you know that if your race is on Friday and it's say a week away, you start immediately to take note of where you are that moment. What are your resources and tools? SO you plan your meals and you plan to practice so you have a better idea of how the race will feel. You prepare yourself, your body, your mind. You take each day as a learning experience towards your goal and you take notes on the things that you learn about yourself along the way. Remember the whole experience is the journey, not just the day of the event!

The big day comes and you're as ready as you can be right! Mom says you GIVE IT YOUR ALL! You go in with every intention of reaching that finish line. Then what happens? Maybe you trip or someone else trips and throws you off or you simply come in second or third. Does this mean you failed? NO! It just means you reached the finish line after someone else - THAT TIME. Or maybe you didn't reach the finish line - THAT TIME.

Apply that to other things, from getting someone to say yes to going on a date or landing the job you wanted or losing five pounds in a month. Did you plan? Did you prepare? Did you practice? So you fall short. SO WHAT. Falling short is not failing. Failing is stopping. Failing is giving up. Failing is quitting. (unless you're reading my other letter about how sometimes quitting is not failing but succeeding - emotionally.)

If you get to finish line first, great! If you get that job or that date or lose that weight, great! But if you don't THAT TIME, that doesn't mean you won't in the future, as long as you take notes on what you did and look and see where you can change things to make the next time better. YES, THE NEXT TIME. With every try you learn more and more. See, failing to get somewhere once is just that first try. I can overload you with dozens of quotes about trying and trying until you succeed but the truth is that every time you try you ARE succeeding - in getting just one more step closer to figuring things out.

I can't tell you how many times I've fallen short, in my professional life as well as my personal life. But it wasn't always for too long because I wouldn't stop trying. I didn't stop trying to find a job or project that provided me with what I wanted, whether it was personal satisfaction or simply money. I never stopped trying to find love even though my heart had been broken. I didn't stop looking for answers even though the questions sometimes felt as if they were getting harder. Each "failure" at each try was just a step, up, down, sideways, it didn't matter! It didn't matter because it was a learning step. If I did the exact same thing and got the exact same result well then, I learned that was all I was going to get unless I changed something. That includes even my attitude!

Also never forget. ALl those "notes" I tell you to take down? THAT IS YOUR ARSENAL. With everything you learn about what went wrong or right with a decision you made, you create a new weapon. A new piece of data for your hard drive on life. You fortify your bankability by having experiences that brings you lessons and teachings you about yourself and others. It's okay to go into something and win at it a first time. It's great if you can do it over and over but no one is guaranteed success every time, so be ready.

So darlings, think about what you want to succeed in, plan to succeed, prepare yourself and practice if you can so that you can better gauge what you need to do when the time comes and above all else - GIVE IT YOUR ALL! With each shot you take you really are succeeding, in your life.

Love you so very very much,

Love Mom

Carmen M. Colon is a mother, an engineer, an education and childrens advocate, an author and a workshop facilitator on the topics of leadership, womens empowerment, career advancement and parenting.
She is writing a series of "Dear Kids" letters to her three sons on a series of topics and issues.
Her website is http://carmenmcolon.info
Her books can be found online: http://amazon.com/author/carmencolon

Mother to three amazing self sufficient civic minded sons. Devin Christopher, 25, Fashion Designer, college student in NYC and youngest athletic director ever hired at a major sports complex in NYC. Antonio Fernandez, 20, choreographer, dancer, model, college student in NYC, has already performed with Cyndi Lauper at the Beacon Theatre and simply ready for his close-up. Taylor Aidan, almost 18 (at this release), HS Senior in NYC, amazing singer who is studying to be the next greatest sign language interpreter the world's ever known. (DISCLAIMER: Ok, mom wrote that.)

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