One of my recent goals is to try new things and essentially, just go do stuff. I’ll stop thinking, filtering etc. and see how much more I grow in the new year. So, I recently showed a friend my very hidden ‘comedy routine’.
With comedy, I mean everyone thinks they’re funny, so the only way I thought I could get the truth is to ask my friend to be my audience. So I did the short skit in front of him albeit nervous, and asked his honest opinion. He smiled and said, “it was ok.” So then I asked, “what do you really think?” and he said:
“Ok, honestly? It was awful and it was really weird. No one will understand what you just did.”
On hearing that I immediately felt awful and really weird and that no one would understand what I just did. I face-palmed myself for thinking it might be any good, did I just lose a friend?, why am I so weird, is the sky falling? etc., etc.
But… at the same time, I didn’t regret it because I put the most embarrassing part of myself out there and it was fine. I just got some honest feedback, which is something I considered an accomplishment.
Our fear of failure
As we know, it’s rare to see the the behind the scenes and the struggles in people’s lives especially today on social media. For a lot of us, this difficulty stems from:
What we dread:
1. Expressing true authenticity takes an incredible amount of confidence
2. Other people’s perception of us holds a lot of weight
3. Certain failures are something we may not recover from
But are these points above really true? …
Look at the positives:
1. Expressing true authenticity some would say, is how you find your purpose in life
2. Other people’s perception of us seem to hold a lot of weight (this might be more true for certain folks)
3. Failure is just a nugget of knowledge closer to reaching your goals. Knowledge equates to power.
The sooner you choose to start failing, the sooner you will realize what’s working and what’s not. The truth will come out at some point, and it’s more beneficial that it comes out sooner than later. The amount you’ll learn from trying new things far outweighs any of your fears.
Just break through
“The moment where you should be terrified, is the most blissful moment of your life.” - Will Smith
I just turned thirty(another terrifying thing) so I’ve been reflecting on my twenties. A memory that arose was the beginning of my design career. At the age of 25, I had little experience and my work was rough. Going to work wasn’t discouraging because I worked under an accepting designer who wanted to help me succeed. And I realized it’s easier if I don’t have to go it alone.
With time, and nothing to lose, I grew better and learned when I leapt I created the net on my way down. If I had never put myself out there, I wouldn’t really be doing what I’m doing today. So, advice for new designers and first-timers: Go fail. And then fail again. Your future self will be glad you did.
Try again, fail again, fail better. - Samuel Beckett
Will Smith’s explains his experience of fear while sky-diving: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VsTBCQ2MnRM