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Courage to Try Something New

Have you ever noticed that kids are naturally good at trying new things? When a child is small, so much of their experiences are new and in order to figure things out, they are always trying new things. As we grow, our world becomes more and more familiar and trying new things is no longer a necessity.

Somewhere in the middle of everything, we also take on the belief that "something worth doing is worth doing right" and we start expecting perfection of ourselves. Most children know that if they keep trying, eventually they will find a way to do the thing they see others doing. They learn to walk and to talk and write the alphabet, and they aren't afraid to make a million mistakes in the process.

I read a book a few years ago called Chasing Failure by Ryan Leak. It had a lot of great ideas and stories, but the big take away for me was that we have to get really comfortable with failing in order to find the successes that we are looking for... And not only should we be comfortable with failure, but we should seek it out! We will find success so much faster when we are willing to make as many mistakes as it takes to figure out success.

So, if it's natural for kids to fail (and presumably the younger versions of ourselves), and also so important to our success, how do we get better at it?

We talked last week about the courage to do small things and I would add to the list the courage to try new things. To have more courage in this area, it helps to understand that sometimes our brains have us believe that failure when trying something new is as bad as being eaten by a tiger... but the truth is that the consequences of messing something up as we attempt something new are generally really small in the long run. When we question how bad it could be, we usually see that our fears are smaller than we thought. It also helps to understand that we make a lot of progress on new things by practicing consistently.

Success comes in choosing courage when when faced with other people's opinions and in choosing consistent practice, even when we don't see measurable success right away.

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I think it's because we are so busy as people in the world today, but so often we choose not to think deeply about the choices and plans we make. I have found this especially true when it comes to goa


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