Learn or Blame

What defines you as a being either a failure or a person making mistakes on their way to learning or even mastering something?  A simple distinction from legendary basketball coach John Wooden: “You aren’t a failure until you start to blame.”  Essentially, you can be in the process of learning from your mistakes until you deny them.

How do you respond to your own mistakes or shortcomings?  The world is full of people, circumstances, and conditions that complicate nearly every decision or direction we take.  Projecting the blame for your lack of success on those complications immediately lessens your accountability and determination.

Applied learning is hard, blaming is so easy.  The reality of life is that everything is not possible for everyone.  Case in point, for the 34th year in a row, my name won’t be called in the National Football League Draft.  I probably realized the NFL wasn’t in my future 40+ years ago.  But, I stayed with the competitive sport I loved and continued to learn from the game and the coaches that led it.  When I could no longer play, I learned to coach.  When I no longer coached football, I transferred the value of the lessons that I had learned into my next professions.  I proudly carry the mistakes and the lessons learned from this experience forward every day, but never a blame.

We could all walk away from the complications of life, blaming our lack of success on something or someone else.  Learn what you can and apply what you learn without blame.


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