Failure = The Imaginary Monster Under Your Bed

You can’t fail.

I’m serious.

But it’s true.

Plenty of self-help authors and their acolytes say otherwise.  They acknowledge failure as an essential part of the success process.  They pay it lip service and prop it up with sayings like “failure’s the mother of success.”


There’s another way to look at it.  A better perspective.  Once I adopted it, it’s allowed me to work past resistance and plenty of misgivings about not wanting to “fail.”

And that way is this:

Failure is a concept created in our minds.  It’s an intangible thing, though we give it respect like it was an external law of nature.

Humans are the only silly species that worry about or even comprehend the notion of “failure.” (credit to Eben Pagan for articulating this concept so concisely).

If a lion goes hunting and the gazelle she chases escapes, does she hang her head because she “failed?”  Does this “failure” prevent her from chasing down another gazelle at the next possible opportunity?  Does it make her overanalyze or become timid?

You can't fail...

Do you think she’s worried about “failing?”

The entire idea is ridiculous.

The lion accepts that the first hunt didn’t go the way she wanted.  Then she goes out and does what she needs to do (making adjustments if needed) to accomplish her objective.

There are simply hits and misses.  Things that worked and didn’t work.  “Failure” isn’t part of the equation.

When you realize how silly the concept of failure is, it loses its mysterious hold over you.  There’s less room for analysis paralysis and worrying about being perfect.

You act, see if what you did accomplished your goal, adjust when you need to, and keep acting until it works.

The stuff that doesn’t work along the way is also the stuff that teaches you what it takes to be the best in business.  You’re more receptive to those lessons when you aren’t beating yourself up about “failing.”

So, there you have it.  Action, and one of two results: hits, or essential lessons.

Take “failure” out of your mind, and you literally can’t lose.

P.S. If you’ve got a new ad or marketing campaign in the pipe and you want to win big, get in touch and let’s talk about how we can make it happen.