If at first you don’t succeed… do I even need to finish this phrase off? I hear this slightly overused cliche from all different groups of people in my life. Whether that be my Mum after I came second in a radio competition to win tickets to see Micheal Mcintyre, my friend if I had ONE grammatical error in my recent blog post or my mind telling me to re-spawn yet again after another Tomahawk to the face on Call of Duty! All of which are painful examples to recollect *grasps chest in heartache*. Though, from all of these events I beg to ask two questions – why is it that we use this question so frequently? Is it even necessary? For those who are puzzled, let me have a bash at the answers for you – it’s because others just want to see us succeed through a bit of the ole ‘perseverance’. *Tsk*, asking external questions that I know I will provide the answers with… I need to stop taking pages out of Dora the Explorer’s book!
There have been times in all of our lives when the ‘If at first you don’t succeed’ segment of that phrase has become incredibly appropriate. The first time I see a challenge I think ‘O.M.G. YES I CAN DO THIS THING’, so I approach it like the testosterone-fueled, adrenaline-junkie that I am ( I possess no evidence to prove or deny that = win ). Yet, just like an incredibly patient fisherman, there’s always a catch. That catch, folks, is failure. For all of us, the first failure always brings that painful feeling. For girls, it’s about the same feeling as when you found out that Mean Girls 2 was a ‘straight to DVD’ release, i.e. an *insert derogatory term here*. For us, boys? Well, it’s the same feeling as when a new Twilight film gets released… ohhh the horror. The failure hits you. You lose all sense of achievement and you just ask yourself, ‘Why did that happen? How could I have done that differently? Am I losing my mojo?’
Have no fear, for your mojo may still remain intact. The ”Try, try, try again’ makes its debut into our subconscious and provides the correction to our failures. Here is where, as human beings, we begin to persevere. Just forget everything that happened in the past – for it’s the next moment where you take your failure and make it into a success. Now, here’s a common example that I’m sure you are all familiar with (if not, well, my respect for you is lost). Do you remember ‘Rex’ from ‘Toy Story’? Okay, I know he is a dinosaur and I LOVE dinosaurs, but bear with me, this is relevant. On countless occasions in that beauty of a film that is ‘Toy Story 2′, Rex continuously loses in his/Buzz’ epic, climatic battle with ‘Emperor Zurg’. ‘I’m never gonna defeat Zurg!’ Wallace Shawn *ahem*, sorry, REX exclaims in his lovable, whiny voice. However, with a sense of determination (mainly, that large tail of his) he finally defeats the criminal mastermind of a toy. He set himself a goal and he achieved it – whether that be with the help of a strategy book from an Al’s Toy Barn, or just pushing ourselves that bit further, we can persevere to avoid ‘catching’ failure the second time around and achieve success.
I’ll take a personal approach in this when I say that I always assume achieving this success will be a personal thing. Refusing help from others and just attempting to take the ‘D.I.Y.’ approach is something I can be accused guilty of. BUT, here’s a little, nerdy concept that I use to correct my stubbornness and accept that I can have a little bit of help every once in a while – There is a Sam to every Frodo. Little (pardon the pun) Frodo Baggins wishes to take the ring to Mordor alllll by himself – but will his ‘West-Country’ gardening companion let him go it alone? You bet your hairy, hobbit feet he won’t! We can all share this example when it comes to perseverance. Some of us, including myself, feel that our goal to achieve success through perseverance is down to ourselves. Just once in a while, we should share our heavy load with others and make reaching that goal not as much of an apparently daunting task. An everyday example is in the sport of Football. Despite certain ‘ball-hoggers’ (what rhymes with ‘Main Loony’?), this sport is a team effort. Only in ‘FIFA’ will you see a goalkeeper run from one net to the other in an attempt to score! In the world of reality, players work together to pursue that common goal of victory, of success. Most times, quite literally through blood, sweat and tears. *Yuck*
‘Perseverance is a great element of success. If you only knock long enough and loud enough at the gate you are sure to wake somebody’ as Henry Wadsworth Longfellow once said. You can always rely on myself to find a reliable quote. This is something we can all look towards. Perseverance is about making yourself known, both to others and yourself, that you really want something. Failure is not an option, we have had enough failures. After our failures, we have learnt from our mistakes. Rather than speeding ahead attempting to avoid a blue shell on ‘Mario Kart’, we know to brake just a little bit to slide into second, then accelerate our way into victory whilst Luigi is busy weeping over the victory he almost had. Success? That’s-a more like it!