I mentioned last time that I tried making pone and how I felt while it was baking. It didn’t look how I expected it to and I thought I had failed.
I felt disillusioned and disappointed. It was a terrible feeling.
I thought about this a bit because it really bothered me given the relatively minor event. Cooking for me are experiments and experiences, so something going wrong should not have hurt this much. It got me thinking about my mindset on failure and my relationship with it.
I know that I have a significant fear of failure. The mere belief that I may fail at something causes me to procrastinate and even self-sabotage myself – virtually guaranteeing failure. But the recent episode allowed me to see my physiological response:
- Heart racing
- A sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach
And the thoughts running through my head:
- All my hard work was wasted.
- I’m not good enough.
- People will laugh at me.
- People would think less of me.
And when I found that my pone came out really well despite everything, a little thought in the back of my head goes, “Yeah, this time.”
It seems that after 40+ years of living, of which I’ve spent the last 10 trying to overcome my fear of failure, I still haven’t found a way to successfully beat it. And as much as I like to think I’m above the petty thoughts of others, it was plain to me that it factored heavily in my negative thoughts.
Do the thing you fear at the death of fear is certain, the saying goes. But it seems like I’m the one who is getting weaker every time. Weaker, but not defeated.
Sometimes I can relate to this Mr. Lovenstein comic:
It’s so easy to give up after failing; it takes so much effort to get back up and put yourself back out there. I don’t know how others do it. Perhaps they are gluttons for punishment.