We've all failed at something. It can be paralyzing, embarrassing, humiliating, haunting or downright hilarious. Here's the story of my most embarrassing failure, although it's a little silly:
I flew down to Arizona to meet my boyfriend's (now husband's) family for the first time. We first met with his cool sister who really intimidated me. She offered to take us rollerblading and then to breakfast. I really wanted to make a great first impression, but I can't skate, ski, or do anything similar. I am a total klutz. But I tried.
I started rollerblading and was doing pretty well going down a hill. I was picking up speed, gaining confidence, and then. . . there was a crack in the sidewalk. BAM! I hit the cement and skidded down the rest of the hill on my rear end--ripping a hole in the seat of my pants. A big hole. In front of my boyfriend, his ever cool sister, and a whole corps of cute ROTC guys who were running past right then. I had road rash on my hiney! I wanted to sob-because of my hurt rear end and my hurt pride. Thankfully, my now sister-in-law had an extra layered shirt on, and she let me tie it around my waist. Then I limped to the car in humiliation and that was the end of the rollerblading. (Except that my rear end was numb for two years. Two!)
I've never roller bladed since. Which is kind of sad. I have a friend who loves it and goes often. It makes her so happy, but I'm missing out on that.
Do you ever get scared to try new things because you are afraid you will be awful at them? Do you try it once or twice and then give up? Or do you try, knowing that you have nothing to lose?
That scared feeling we have is often the fear of being vulnerable, and I struggle with that a lot. I am often afraid that people will think I am worthless if I show them my true, flawed self, and I think I have to be great in everything *now*. Thankfully my husband still married me even though I have lousy coordination!
I don't know about you, but I beat myself up a lot when I fall short. I have learned a lot from Brene Brown, who has a really great TED talk and book about that, but for now, I would love to leave you with this message about a whole bunch of people who failed, but then went on to succeed beyond their wildest dreams. Who knows, maybe if I had kept trying, I would be an Olympian by now! (Is rollerblading in the Olympics? Does anyone know?) ;)
Every one starts out as a beginner who fails. The experts are those who keep going.
Family Discussion Guide
-What are you extremely good at?
-Were you this good at it when you first started?
-When we feel like giving up, how can we keep trying?
-What is something you are struggling with right now?
-What is your plan? Can I help?
-What is one thing you can do right now to work on your goal?
Community Question: Do you have a most embarrassing moment when you tried something new? Please share, so I'm not embarrassed in this corner of the internet by myself! :)
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