I remember going to the library in the fourth grade, and picking up a book from The Magic Treehouse series. In this particular book, Jack and Annie, the two siblings, traveled to a class in the 1800s. Back then, the class looked different than it does now. Students were sitting in wooden houses, and the teachers would write on a small slate board with a piece of chalk.
In this particular class, the teacher wrote on her slate board, “If You Don’t Succeed At First, Try, Try, Try Again.”
More than a decade later, I find myself dealing with plenty of challenges related to my academic and personal life. I recently lost a school placement just months before my expected graduation date, and I found myself struggling with challenges related to a particular job.
While commuting home, I thought about quitting. What if I stopped doing what I’m doing? What if I just surrendered? What if it all ended? I would’ve then woken up from this nightmare.
But the reality is that in life, all of us have to face problems to reach our destinations.
Take Walt Disney, for example. He was fired from a newspaper job because the editor said that he ‘lacked imagination.’ Disney then started his own animation studio, Laugh-O-Gram, which ended up going out of business. And later down the road, he lost intellectual property rights to the first cartoon character he created, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit.
But instead of quitting it all, Disney continued to pursue his passions.
Sure, Oswald the Rabbit wasn’t a success. But the next character he prototyped – Mickey Mouse – changed the world forever, perhaps in ways that he didn’t expect.
However, Disney isn’t the only person who has faced countless failures and challenges before achieving the first breakthrough. Michael Jordan didn’t make it on his high school basketball team, and Oprah Winfrey was let go from one of her first television jobs because her employer said she was “unfit for television.”
There are countless other stories of celebrities, managers, and politicians who failed in their first few attempts. But despite the struggles they faced, they never forgot about their dream.
At first, these struggles seem like dams built along rivers or mountains on our paths. We don’t see what’s ahead. All that we see is the challenge that we have to conquer.
That’s why sometimes we feel that we have to turn back and retrace our steps.
Because all that we see are failures, and even if we conquer such problems, we can’t predict the results.
However, to achieve our dreams, we have to learn from these failures and find our own solutions. When one way doesn’t work, we simply have to reassess the problem and figure out something else. As a result, we’ll be able to learn from our mistakes and find a way to do better in the future.
But we cannot learn from our mistakes if we give up. Giving up is simply avoiding and ignoring the problem. And this isn’t the way we should approach our dreams if we want them badly.
Instead, we should try again.
We should try a new method that may work better than the previous one. We should perhaps change our approach. We should reframe the situation and look at it as an opportunity to learn.
It’s just a matter of taking the first few steps to climb up the mountain or destroy the dam. I get it – at first, it isn’t easy to admit defeat. But the more you face these problems, the more you’ll be prepared to conquer your fears.
After all, the success and the lessons you learn from trying will be worth it. It’s hard to envision what’s coming. But even if you can’t see the result in the moment, you’ll be able to learn something new and be prepared to approach challenges in the future.
Sure, it’s a long but eye-opening journey. So, pack your bags, climb the mountain, and look ahead. Find a way to conquer every hurdle you’ll face and treat every bruise you’ll get. It’s difficult, and there will be lots of tears. But when you look ahead, you’ll notice how much closer you are.
The more you trudge through these hurdles, the closer you’ll get to your dreams.
So don’t dwell on the time that’s passing because, eventually, you’ll get there. And you will have achieved something that you’ve never dreamt of.
Featured image via geralt on Pixabay
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