Sunday, October 24, 2010

UnIntuitive Survival vs Guaranteed Failure

As absurd as it may sound put like that, I think most people, given the choice, will choose guaranteed failure over unintuitive survival. Let me explain. When faced with difficulties, oftentimes we tend to walk out if staying doesn't guarantee success. Why? Obvious. We know what to expect if we walk away (nothing?) but not if we stay. Will we achieve our goal? How will we feel if, after all the battles, we fail? Epically? Sometimes that risk is too big to take (if other people's well-being are at stake for example!). But sometimes it isn't (if it's just me). Sometimes it's just us looking at it from the wrong angle.

Disclaimer: I don't think whatever I write is "ultimately" true. It's MY truth and MY view of things. Everyone's welcome to disagree.

When life feels too hard to handle, I've learned that the solution is often counter-intuitive. Unless of course we're talking about philosophical questions that have no answer by definition. In the case of most personal/work-related problems, here's what I've found:

If the reflex was to think about it night and day and let it bring me down, then often, I found the solution to be to stop thinking about it. To occupy the mind with other, more productive mental activities like learning something or creating. Sometimes we try too hard to do everything at all times. Just relax and take Train's advice:

If the reflex was to ignore it and not deal with it, the answer for me was to think about it more. To bring the problem closer. To think about it in new, different ways. To try to identify WHAT it is that I did not see about the problem that makes the problem seem unsolvable. Can't solve a problem if you don't know what the problem is exactly! Once the problem is identified, solutions usually become easier to find :)

If the reflex was to give up, then most of the time, I end up realizing that there is in fact a solution if I can just get myself past the initial urge to walk away instead of learning to deal with it positively. Finding opportunity in difficulties is what it's all about. Who knows what serendipitous discovery we might come across?

Success cannot be guaranteed, but failure can (if I say I can't do it). Are our fears of failure worth walking away for? For me, at least, it isn't. Life is a risk, might as well go all in on what you believe in. But then again, that might just be me.

1 comment:

  1. Sometimes it's not only fears of failure but also fear of success :p

    Great blog and posts by the way! I tried to start blogging again too, but somehow I don't get the inspiration like before... I should try harder :p

    Keep it up!