“Success is the ability to go from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm.” - Winston Churchill
One thing is nearly a guarantee in life, you WILL fail! It is nearly a certainty in this life we live. Sometimes projects don't come to fruition quite like you thought or you don't perform as well in a particular situation as you expected yourself to. In this blog post I am going to share an example of a failed project in my personal life and a few tips on how to rebound from a failure or setback.
At the beginning of 2016 I, like many others, chose to take on a project that was outside of my comfort zone that would push me to get better. I decided to attempt to visit all of the State Parks in the state of Oklahoma in a calendar year. I intended to use this project to accomplish several things: to visit parts of the state that I grew up in, to travel more than I did in 2015, and to have more days outside than I did in 2015.
I started in January and visited a park simply because I had just purchased a new bike and wanted to put it to work on a decent trail. That started a series of visits to parks including some extremely local like Cherokee Landing and Sequoyah State Park and some that I had never visited like Osage Hills and Lake Murray State Park. Below are a few images from several of those trips throughout the year.
Those images show some of the best of the parks that I visited. The trips were not failures by themselves, but the project as a whole was a failure. I visited a measly 40% of Oklahoma state parks by November. FORTY PERCENT! I find it really healthy to figure out why a particular project failed. The biggest contributing factor to my failure was the number of other projects that I took on during 2016. During the same year I made/will make major repairs to my home and one of my vehicles, purchased a school bus and began converting it into a camper, and made two separate week-long trips to Colorado. All the while, maintaining a full time job. It has been one of the busiest and most fulfilling years of my life.
Here is how I have recovered and bounced back from failure on a project:
Whatever you do, don't sit around and fixate on your failures. Get out and start something new. It doesn't have to be a resolution or a year-long project, but invest your time and effort into something that challenges you and helps you grow. Better yet, invest your time in helping others in need.
Do you have any similar stories of failure and bounce back? Please share them in the comments below or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am always looking for contributors to the blog or guest posts to my IG feed. As always, you can follow me on Instagram @okienomads.