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Showing posts with the label Failing Forward

“By far the greatest single obstacle to success that I see in others is a poor understanding of people.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Makethe Most of Your Mistakes (p. 155). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
Do you like people?  Do you get along with people?  Do you have problems with people?
Listen, people are very important and it is very important that you realize that.  If you don’t then you are going to have problems with living a fulfilling and successful life. 
John said, “I was talking to some people a couple of days ago, and they were complaining about not winning a business contract that they had bid on. ‘It wasn't fair,’ one person told me. ‘All the people involved knew each other, and we didn't have a chance. It's all politics.’ But what he went on to describe wasn't politics. It was relationships.”
He then said, “Authors Carole Hyatt and Linda Gottlieb indicate that people who fail on the job commonly cite ‘office politics’ as the reason for their failures…

“Was what happened truly a failure, or did I just fall short?”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Makethe Most of Your Mistakes (p. 142). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
In my reading, I come upon so many good thoughts that it is hard to sometimes choose what to highlight.  This Monday morning was one of those times.  But this one is the first one that caught my attention.  Maybe this thought is for you.
John says, “You need to determine if what happened was really a failure. What you think is your fault may have been an attempt to fulfill unrealistic expectations. It doesn't matter whether you place them on yourself or someone else does; if a goal is unrealistic and you miss it, that is not a failure.”
We are so quick to want to play the blame game even if it is with ourselves.  Now it is important to learn from our mistakes but a realistic evaluation is very important.  And many times unrealistic expectations can be the problem.  In other wo…

“We overestimate the event and underestimate the process.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Makethe Most of Your Mistakes (p. 114). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
I don’t think in any way we could overestimate the event of Easter.  I mean Jesus was resurrected, He came back to life.  That has made all the difference in our lives, in our world and in our future.  But the reality is, we wouldn’t have had Easter without Good Friday.  He had to die first.
Oh how we would like to do away with the Good Friday’s of our life.  We hate the pain of adversity.   We in the middle of it have a pity party or even a life is not fair lament.  But the Good Friday’s of our life can be our friend, not our enemy.  It is in those horrible days that we will go through that something can be built into us that will make all of the difference in our lives if we chose to let them help to make us better and not bitter and draw us closer to God.
Now what if Jesus would…

“A major cause of negative thinking and poor mental health is self-absorption.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Makethe Most of Your Mistakes (p. 102). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
It is so easy to be self-absorbed isn't it?  
John says, “Selfishness ultimately hurts not only the people around a self-focused person, but also the selfish person himself. It inclines the person toward failure because it keeps him in a negative mental rut.”  Man that is the truth. I read so much of that on Facebook.
So how do you get out of this negative mental rut?  John tells of a response by Dr. Karl Menninger when asked, “‘What would you advise a person to do if he felt a nervous breakdown coming on?’ Most people expected him to reply, ‘Consult a psychiatrist,’ since that was his profession. To their astonishment, Menninger replied, ‘Lock up your house, go across the railway tracks, find someone in need, and do something to help that person.’”
John then says, “Developing a…

“Say good-bye to yesterday.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Makethe Most of Your Mistakes (p. 84). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
OK, I can see that I need to take care of some things in my past to not let them hold me back to not let them be my total focus but how do I do that?  What do I do? 
John gives some good guidelines in this.  He says, “Take time right now to list the negative events from your past that may be holding you hostage: For each item you listed, go through the following process. 1. Acknowledge the pain. 2. Grieve the loss. 3. Forgive the person. 4. Forgive yourself. 5. Determine to release the event and move on. If you are having a hard time because you're holding grudges, talk to God about the issue and ask Him to help you through the process. No matter how difficult this becomes, persevere through it. You will not be able to be your best today until you say good-bye to yesterday.”
No…

“No matter how dark a person's past is, it need not color his present permanently.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Make the Most of Your Mistakes (p. 78). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)

Have you come to realize that yet?  When my father was killed in a truck accident it colored my life for a long time but finally the pain turned to good memories that I hold onto.  I somewhere somehow let go of the pain.
John says, “Someone who is unable to get over previous hurts and failures is held hostage by the past. The baggage he carries around makes it very difficult for him to move forward. In fact, in more than thirty years of working with people, I have yet to meet a successful person who continually dwelt on his past difficulties.”
Have you ever gotten in a car and found the driver looking continually in the rear view mirror?  He is totally looking at where he has come from.  Of course not.  If it happened you would immediately want him to stop and get out.  But so many…

“A problem is something that can be solved. A fact of life is something that must be accepted.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Makethe Most of Your Mistakes (p. 67). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
I am overweight.  That is a problem.  I am short.  That is a fact of life.  There is nothing that I can do to get taller.  I will never be taller than what I am today but I can get smaller.  I have this week already lost 3 lbs.  I at one time weighed 260 lbs.  I had to do something about that and I eventually got down to 210 lbs.  Now through different situations I had gotten back up to 223 lbs. and decided that I wanted to do something about that.  So that is a problem that I am striving to solve.
Now John says, “Some people get into trouble because they focus their attention on things beyond their control.”  Somebody leaves you.  They may die or they may decide that they don’t want to be married anymore so you go to pieces and your focus becomes something beyond your control. 
He…

“The fight to take responsibility occurs within.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Make the Most of Your Mistakes (p. 54). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
I have been having a problem with gaining the weight that I have been successful at losing over the years.  I had thrown out all my XXL clothes but the XL clothes that I had kept were starting to get tight so I went out and bought some larger clothes again and by doing that I had just accepted the fact that I was destined to be overweight until last night I stopped and took responsibility to figure out what I needed to do.  I decided to do something about the problem other than buying new clothes.  So I sat down and started thinking and talking with my wife and we came up with a new plan and I started doing it today.  Inside of me I decided to take responsibility not to just accept that I couldn’t do anything about it.
John quoted Michael Korda who is the editor in chief of Simon …

“Every failure you experience is a fork in the road.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Makethe Most of Your Mistakes (p. 52). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
Have you found that true?    You have a choice to make and it is a critical choice.  Do I go right or left?  As John says, “It's an opportunity to take the right action, learn from your mistakes, and begin again.”
But so many choose the self-pity road.  I can never do anything right.  Everything is against me.  I can’t believe this is happening to me.  And they keep on the failure freeway and never get off of it until they decide to change the way they think and then do something about it.
John shares the “Autobiography in Five Short Chapters” by Portia Nelson, which “describes the process of exiting the failure freeway: Chapter 1. I walk down the street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I fall in. I am lost. I am helpless. It isn't my fault. It takes forever to find a …

“If you always do what you've always done, then you will always get what you've always gotten.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Makethe Most of Your Mistakes (p. 48). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
Wow, that is the truth.  John then says, “People are prone to ruts. And anyone who has been conditioned to think failure is his fate has an especially hard time exiting the failure freeway.”
I started doing something this past year that I really enjoy doing.  I take and pickup my wife, Margaret from her work every work day.  That gives us extra time together and also helps her plan her day and check off all her emails at the end of her day.  It also means we spend a lot of time on the LA Freeway system.  Anywhere from 30 minutes to over an hour.  Now if I had found a route and decided to stick with it every day coming and going I would spend even more time but I have a helper called Waze that sets and changes how I go each time.  It gives me the best and fastest route and it is alm…

“To conquer fear, you have to feel the fear and take action anyway.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Makethe Most of Your Mistakes (p. 41). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
I’m sure all of us have something that we are afraid of and we'd like to conquer it.  For some it might be a snake or a spider and those can be annoying but for the most part that fear doesn’t keep us from living life to its fullest.  You just strive to keep away from them.
But others have fears that keep them from living life to the level that God has for them and they want to somehow conquer their fears.
For some it might be the fear of their health.  They know they need to exercise or eat right or check their blood sugar.  And as John says,  “You can't wait for motivation to get you going.”
But in doing this John says, “Motivation is not going to strike you like lightning. And motivation is not something that someone else —nurse, doctor, family member— can bestow or force…

“Achievers reject rejection.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Makethe Most of Your Mistakes (p. 27). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
Now rejection hurts. It really does especially if you did something to cause it.  We have all experienced it but how we deal with it is the key to really living the life God has for us. 
John says on this, “People who don't give up keep trying because they don't base their self-worth on their performance. Instead, they have an internally based self-image. Rather than say, ‘I am a failure,’ they say, ‘I missed that one,’ or ‘I made a mistake.’ Psychologist Martin E. Seligman believes we have two choices when we fail: We can internalize or externalize our failure. ‘People who blame themselves when they fail . . . think they are worthless, talentless, unlovable,’ says Seligman. ‘People who blame external events do not lose self-esteem when bad events strike.’  To keep the rig…

“Failure is really a matter of conceit.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Makethe Most of Your Mistakes (p. 18). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)

Think about this.  John continues, “People don't work hard because, in their conceit, they imagine they'll succeed without ever making an effort. Most people believe that they'll wake up some day and find themselves rich. Actually, they've got it half right, because eventually they wake up.”
I had someone yesterday try to get me involved in some get rich scheme.  Some people think that is the way God works.  No, he works through people working.  He gives us abilities and then opportunities.  And then we work hard and smart. Work is God’s plan.
But we sit around and wait on God to meet our needs.  And he is waiting on us to do our part.  Now is it easy.No but it can be exciting and challenging and rewarding.
John then says, “Each of us has to make a choice. Are we goin…

“People Think Failure Is Avoidable— It's Not.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Makethe Most of Your Mistakes (p. 13). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)

We all make mistakes.  But the key is what we do with them.  Do we keep making the same ones or do we grow. 
John found these Rules for Being Human. He said, “I think the list describes well the state we're in as people: Rule #1: You will learn lessons. Rule #2: There are no mistakes— only lessons. Rule #3: A lesson is repeated until it is learned. Rule #4: If you don't learn the easy lessons, they get harder. (Pain is one way the universe gets your attention.) Rule #5: You'll know you've learned a lesson when your actions change.”
We’re all going to make mistakes, we’re all going to fail but do we learn from it and change.  That is up to us. 
John also says, “Every person's life is filled with errors and negative experiences. But know this: Errors become mistak…

“Your perception of and response to your mistakes determine whether your actions are failures.”

A thought by John C. Maxwell (2000-03-08) from his book, Failing Forward: How to Makethe Most of Your Mistakes(p. 15). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition.
I read this book back in 2008 when it came out and found it very beneficial and practical then picked it up again and found it to be the same in 2015.  Mistakes can be enemies for us in so many ways but they also can be very close friends.  It is all in our perspective and response to them.
John says, “You are the only person who can really label what you do a failure.”  And that makes the difference in whether it is your friend or your enemy. 
John says, “According to Tulane University business professor Lisa Amos, the average for entrepreneurs is 3.8 failures before they finally make it in business. They are not deterred by problems, mistakes, or errors. Why? Because they don't see setbacks as failures. They recognize that three steps forward and two steps back still equals one step forward. And as a result, they overcome the average…