We Are All Works of Art in Progress. Masterpieces Don’t Happen Quickly



At one of my 7×7 Mentoring Salons about career transition and 20-something flux we had a discussion about failure.  The mantra today is fail fast. The entrepreneurial way of business…the faster you fail the faster you fix. This led to a discussion of personal failure – does it take longer to understand our failures? This woman thinks so. It’s wonderful perspective on the joys of failing slow. I thought perhaps personal vs. professional failure is different.  She wasn’t sure that was true in all cases but I will let you decide for yourself.


As for slow failure, I think it’s a different approach entirely that challenges our current assumptions about gulping down the medicine quick, with our noses plugged or with a spoonful of sugar. It’s our good, ole American way to hyper-speed ourselves through anything that slightly reeks of pain or discomfort.


Slow failure is more about being open to the discomfort of “failure” and allowing it to organically unfold into the next thing. Without rushing it, speeding it up, glossing over it. It’s about feeling all the pointed, jagged edges of failure. Where we stop trying to pretend it’s not that bad, or it doesn’t really hurt. It’s about realizing it’s ok to surrender into the failure – however long it takes.


We are socially and culturally addicted to the “up.” We hide from the “down.” We don’t allow it to teach us all of it’s juicy nuggets of wisdom because we’re so busy saying “it’s not so bad,” or “let’s get this over quickly.”


So not true! Slow down. Instead of beating ourselves up over it…be curious. What’s here? What can I learn from this? What’s the silver lining that’s been designed just for me?


There’s the gift! Only available when we slow down and pay attention and  don’t run from the discomfort. Instead embrace our humanity and know that life is messy and muddy and filled with lots of disappointments, shortcomings + less than culturally-defined stellar outcomes.


We are all works of art in progress. Masterpieces don’t happen quickly.  – 40-something — A teacher, coach, sexy soul + (soon-to-be-published) author, Colorado



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