Failure is an opportunity to try again
By Editor-in-chief Lindy Olsen
Transformation, by definition, is “a marked change in form, nature, or appearance”, “a process by which one figure, expression, or function is converted into another one of similar value”.
Personally, I believe that transformation is more than just the physical evidence of change; it includes a total mindset shift. Once you’ve successfully transformed your mind, and you’ve become exactly who you were always meant to be (your authentic self), then your body, lifestyle and attitude robotically follows.
Your authentic self knows what you really, truly want. I know this all sounds a little airy fairy but try to think about it like this … you know that goal buried in the back of your conscious mind that niggles quietly in the background? The one that you keep pushing down because “life” happens. It’s the one you secretly wish you could achieve, but somehow it gets pushed way back behind every other priority you have. If this sounds like you, then you need to make yourself a promise that you won’t stop working for it, regardless of what life throws your way.
I’ll let you in on a little secret, the more you bury it behind all the other things you should be doing, the more likely it is that you NEED to make it a much bigger priority on your list! Yes that’s right, it probably just popped into your head as you read this sentence, didn’t it? Oh and guess what, it won’t go away until you have really, truly given it your all.
So what happens if you make this goal a priority and you don’t achieve the results you were after? Are you a failure? HELL NO! Failure is simply an opportunity for you to learn what not to do and to try again with a different plan of attack, so that you don’t make the same mistake twice. The more times you don’t reach your desired result, the more you can eliminate what doesn’t work. But hang on, there’s one huge caveat around everything I’ve just said … you need to ask yourself this:
Can you honestly look in the mirror and say that you have given it 100 per cent and that there was nothing more you could have done in order to reach your goal? If so then great, you’ve done your best. But if your answer is anything else, then you’ve got work to do! By identifying the things that are holding you back, you’re much more likely to succeed than to keep doing the same thing day in, day out and expecting a different result.
If your genuine goal is to run 5km in under 30 minutes, and you’ve trained hard for three months in order to participate in your local fun run, but you manage to complete it in 35 minutes, make sure you keep yourself in check. Remind your authentic self that you’re on your way to reaching your goal and if you keep at it, you’ll succeed. Before you give up go back to the drawing board, kick yourself in the butt and keep training in order to work towards your existing goal.
So many people change their goal just because they didn’t succeed the first time. Then they convince themselves that despite training hard, they are not meant to run. This is a load of rubbish and is usually just a cop-out for those people who are afraid to keep working hard until they succeed. Let me remind you that nothing worthwhile EVER comes easy, whether it’s participating in a local fun run, or winning five World Natural Figure and Fitness Model Titles! Believe me, I know what hard work, persistence and consistency is all about. I would not be doing what I love, and have those World Titles to be proud of, if I gave up every time I didn’t reach my goal.
Likewise, changing your goal because you think you might be better at something else doesn’t mean that it won’t rear its ugly head again. It’s always there! Your true authentic self will keep reminding you of it and it’s such a valuable life lesson.
On top of that, despite what you might think, it’s not all about winning. I know that’s not easy to say to a competitive person, however if you take the time to sit down and look at what you’ve achieved in your life, and give yourself credit where credit is due, you’ll realise that there is a lot to be thankful for. It’s such an easy thing to dismiss, but if you don’t stop to look at what you’ve accomplished, then nothing you do will ever be good enough and you’ll have no one to blame but yourself.
Remember, true transformation comes from within, you’ve got to want it with EVERY ounce of who you are. If you can do this, I guarantee the rest will follow.
Train hard, keep fit and love life (and don’t be so hard on yourself).