We’ve all been there, haven’t we? Sitting at some $99 kitchen table, remote tossed carelessly to one side, with Led Zeppelin blaring in the background? Head in hands, we weep for our failures.
It’s no accident that the regretful figure is a storm trooper. What’s that like? You’re nameless, faceless, sacrificing your life for an empire you might not even believe in? And you can’t even get that right.
I feel that way sometimes. Do you?
We can’t live there.
So the story goes:
Thomas Edison conducted over 10,000 experiments before he successfully invented an efficient incandescent lamp, suitable for home use. Edison wrote,
The electric light has caused me the greatest amount of study and has required the most elaborate experiments. I was never myself discouraged, or inclined to be hopeless of success. I cannot say the same for all my associates.
In the midst of his study, he was asked if he felt like a failure. Astonished, Edison famously replied,
Young man, why would I feel like a failure? I now know definitively over 9,000 ways that an electric light bulb will not work. Success is almost in my grasp.
And about 1,000 experiments later, he had it.
Fall down seven times, get up eight.
Lately I’ve been thinking, not only about my mistakes, but about all the time I’ve lost reeling from them.
Trying again is the only option.
I have learned so much. I’m not the person I was then.