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A Student Response From:

Armelle

A dear friend of mine is going through a divorce and has started gravitating towards reading self help books and receiving daily affirmations from an app called “iam” to get through the days. I tried the app in solidarity but found the affirmations to be a little too saccharine for my taste.

“I am imperfect, but I love and accept all that I am “

“I am going to achieve all of my dreams”

“I will use these hard time to make me a better person”

I opted instead to read The Subtle Art of not Giving an eff by Mark Manson. The inclusion of the expletive in this supposed self help book made it easier on my pallet. In this book, he talks in Chapter 7 about how failure is the way forward, “improvement at anything is based on thousands of tiny failures, and the magnitude of your success is based on how many times you’ve failed at something” (p. 150).

Somewhere along the way we have been afraid of failure or try to avoid it at all costs. Manson suggests changing the value and its metric. Or as you so eloquently put it “deconstruct the concept of failure entirely” and “shift my focus.“

The more you fail, the more likely you are to succeed. Success comes from improvement and improvement comes from failure. Edison tried many prototypes before getting the lightbulb right - and even that is changing today! It's known that Post-it accidentally created a low tack adhesive when trying to find a really strong one.

How many bright ideas (pun intended to light bulb reference) do we now jot down on a note (clap back to post-its) that may or may never “succeed” (whatever that means).

Bring on the failures!

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