There is magic in courage, in being brave enough to step outside your comfort zone. There are opportunities and possibilities out there that we might not be aware of, if we don’t allow for some risks in life. Sometimes being unsure and not knowing feels like a real adventure. And even if it doesn’t go as expected, the magic is still there. We love awesome fails. Why are they awesome? Because without events that we label as “failures” we wouldn’t learn some of the most valuable lessons in life.
Today we come to you with 3 stories written by our own Maureen, Janice and Joanna about the most awesome fails they experienced. And these words fit here perfectly “What if I fall? Oh, my darling, what if you fly?” . The Magic of Awesome Fails is in the opportunities for greatness, in the opportunity to achieve levels of success, to allow for rich and really awesome learning. Interested to hear how it turned out for the ladies? Then, read on
Working in a job I’m good at
My first real job (discounting working in a restaurant, a hairdressers and a newsagents/video shop during my secondary school years) was in IT. Brand spanking new IT. It really was the IT job at the time. Computers were all the rage, some even thought they might catch on! As it was the 80’s I was primed for a career in IT, I was great at maths and logical thinking and so that’s what happened – IT happened to me. The problem was, I was good, maybe even great at it. I got a job teaching IT and computer programming in a private college and travelled around the UK demystifying these computer beasts and helping the cynical embrace the new shiny technology.
I was confused. I loved teaching people, I didn’t love computers, I certainly didn’t love the company I worked for as their values were in complete conflict with mine. However, 1 out 3 didn’t seem too bad and as I kept being told, “sure isn’t it a solid job with a solid income”. Every minute I worked there felt like an hour. Every Sunday evening I would begin to feel the dis-ease of what was facing me the next day. I failed myself here for nearly 3 years!! Why, because I was good at it.
My life lesson.
Do not accept good. It’s not good enough unless it’s GREAT. Being good at something can be a distraction especially if it’s delaying a change for the better. A change from good to great.
“An awesome fail” I am proud of
I remember the day very well. I had to fly from London to Dublin very early in the morning and return on the same day late in the evening. I only had this one day in Dublin… to find a job.
At the time I was living in London with my boyfriend (now husband). A “helpful” friend of his (I wonder why at the time I wasn’t particularly fond of her… :)) supported him in finding a job here in Dublin and we decided to move. It was a major change for me especially as I did not have any professional opportunities waiting for me here. But I stood up to the challenge and on my day off work I flew here to look after my career in this new and unknown country.
As a research and internet freak! I did my homework. From the airport I headed straight to Dublin city centre to visit recruitment agencies I had found online, in search of opportunities. I remember being on Dame Street or on Dawson Street. They are now very familiar places but at the time the city centre was quite overwhelming. In one of the agencies I had a meeting with a career advisor that challenged me a lot and asked a lot of tough questions. It felt like a job interview in itself. It was 11 am in the morning and the day had only begun. For me however it was so full on that I felt like I had crammed a week of challenges into one day. But I survived.
All the recruiters knew that I had come to Dublin for the day only, so an agency I visited first managed to arrange an interview on short notice with one of the top brands on high street. When they phoned me I couldn’t believe it. More challenges! Yikes!
Ok, no time to think, I had to get ready. I had no friends to visit or look after me in the meantime and… it had just started raining. Knowing the importance of first impressions I needed to ensure that after a long day of traveling and meetings, at least my makeup looked perfect. I decided to head to one of the biggest concession stores in Dublin and ask for help at one of the makeup stands. It worked. The girls who were working there agreed to help and very kindly fixed my makeup. It was the best decision I could have made. This gave me an extra boost of confidence when I made my way to the location of my interview. To my absolute amazement… I got the job.
By 5 pm I was done (literally and metaphorically). One of my friends who lived in Dublin had just finished work so we went for a meal and a well-deserved cup of coffee.
I don’t consider this day to be an absolute fail especially as there was a happy ending. But it wasn’t the easiest day of my life and I will remember it forever. I will remember the lessons I learnt about job searching, requirements, personal brand and most importantly about myself – what I was and was not capable of at the time. I knew one thing very well: In life, you can expect surprises! Trust me, this was a great starting point for my new career …
On the way to Champagne
For many years I had wanted to go to Champagne in France, purely for cultural reasons….So when my friends asked what I would like to do for my 40th birthday I decided it was time to go to Champagne. My friends were all up for it so I was so excited. I did my research and when the time came to book none of my friends were able to go. At the time it didn’t bother me and I had a great birthday celebration with them. Quite some time later I was walking in to work one morning when I suddenly remembered the Champagne trip that never happened and started to feel annoyed, let down and sorry for myself. Thankfully a good old Reality Check alarm bell went off in my head and by the time I arrived at work I had decided that I was going to Champagne. I booked my trip and went on my own. It was fantastic, I visited all the champagne houses on my list, met some great people, had a lot of fun and sampled the odd glass of champagne.
Through this experience I became much more confident and excited about travelling alone. I also learned that I am responsible for making things happen in my life and the next time I find myself blaming other people, things etc. I will check if it is actually me that is getting in my own way.
What magic have you found in your own awesome fails? What have you learnt?
Looking forward to your comments and shares!
Image courtesy of digitalart
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