Saturday, 27 April 2013

The Secret of Failure!

Now you must be thinking that I have gone crazy writing this. Everyone talks about the "Secrets of Success" and here I am writing just the opposite. But I do believe that it is necessary to know about failure and what causes it to understand our own conditioning better. It is like the root cause which when removed automatically acts in the favor of the opposite of failure.

A few days back in the Indian Premier League (for the unaware, it is an over-hyped cricket tournament played in India), one team scored a massive amount of runs courtesy a man I named the "Godzilla of Cricket." Chris Gayle, the batsman from West Indies, had everything going for him that day. But when the opposition came out to bat, there wasn't much to see. They weren't even half of what the previous team was in that game. As much as Chris Gayle enjoyed playing, the whole of the opposition team came out to bat with "no hopes" written on their face and everywhere else.

In one of my training programs (I am a behavioral skills trainer, for your information) I found a group of managers seated like egoistic kings who knew-it-all and staring at me. Barring a few learners, the rest were a lot that I do find in many places, and they remind me of the story of the king who walked naked, fooled by a clever tailor. What was more interesting though was when their boss walked into the room to see how things were going. I suddenly saw a group of people united by a spirit to learn and implement. Lots of questions came up from a group which was disinterested just a few minutes back. And when the boss spoke, there was silence. As if the crowd was saying, "You are the boss, and the boss is always right!"

There was a young man who once came up to me asking for some advice. He said that he felt demotivated. He never got a pat on the back on having those small successes, but always received reprimands when he made those few errors. I said, "Why don't you talk to your supervisor? He may not be aware of your state of mind." The answer was prompt and as I had expected. "Nope, I can't do that. That would be digging my own grave!"

Well, you have it. The secret of failure is "Fear!" Yes, my friend, believe it or not, it is. Fear is our most constant companion who ensures that we do not take the risks. Fear breaks our will to do things. Fear helps us maintain the status quo. Fear holds us back from everything that we are capable of doing.

Deep inside you there is a voice that says that human will is so strong that it can achieve the impossible. It says that you have it in you too. Then speaketh the companion. Fear says, "Are you sure?" And you console yourself with a lie, "I am happy the way it is, why take a chance?" Fear of the unknown? As if you can see the future to be positive while maintaining the status quo!