- heroic courage when facing tough decisions
"I've missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed." - Michael Jordan
For the Parent::Battle Cry
Atychiphobia: an irrational and paralyzing fear of failure. Now I don’t mean to be insensitive to those who truly suffer from this clinically-defined mental disorder, but it is my belief that we are all afflicted with atychiphobia to one degree or another. Perhaps it should simply be renamed “the human condition”. How many times have you given up because it was easier than failure? How often do you find yourself putting off decisions that must be made because you’re afraid that you’ll make the wrong choice? How many people have gone to the grave without ever seeing their dreams realized because they were afraid of chasing those goals and failing? Far too often and far too many. Failure is everyone’s hidden fear, and fear of failure is the silent killer of our dreams. Living with valor means accepting our failures as a means to grow and learn – and then picking ourselves up and trying again.
For Your Son::Call to Arms
Answer this question: What do you think most people are afraid of?
If you’re like me, you probably said something like spiders, snakes, heights, or the dark. Those are all good guesses, because we all know people who are afraid of those things (or maybe we’re even afraid of them ourselves). What if I told you that more than anything else, people are afraid of failing? Everyone is afraid of failing. Afraid that they’re not good enough. Afraid that they will strike out. Afraid that they won’t win the big game. Afraid that they won’t pass the test. However, the Warrior Poet knows that valor is the key to defeating this fear. When you fail, have the valor to stand back up and try again, because failure is just another chance to learn from your mistakes. Never let fear of failing keep you from trying your best, following your dreams or doing the right thing.
Sometimes the best “activity” is simply an honest discussion. If you think your son is old enough to benefit from it, simply ask him, “Where are some areas where you’re afraid of failing?”. His answers will let you know how best to encourage him in the future.