“Nana korobi, ya oki”
Google translate assures me that this means, “Fall down 7 times, get up 8”.
If I accidentally said anything rude about your mom in Japanese, I am truly sorry.
I initially heard this phrase when I was heavy into combat sports. It was probably bejeweled on an Affliction shirt somewhere.
I took it as, “Get up you wimp. Eventually you’ll stop getting your face smashed in.”
While that might be true, the reality is much more complex, much more valuable, and probably what the original proverb actually meant.
That reality is that, no matter what battles you choose, you’re always going to fail along the way. Many, many times.
Enough times that you will want to quit. You will second/third/fourth guess your abilities, your fortitude and your will.
The only way you don’t experience that feeling is if you never get off the couch in the first place.
However, when you fail (and don’t forget that you will), remember:
– You must get back up.
– You must realize that you’ve earned the right to get knocked down.
– You’ve conquered all the obstacles to get here, now you found a new obstacle you don’t know how to get around yet.
– You must now learn something new. The best lessons are often painful, but on the other side of that pain is success.
– This will never end. If I knew how to say “fall down infinity times, stand up infinity plus 1” in Japanese, I would.
– The only way the failing stops is if you stop trying.
In my world, this is incredibly relevant as we move into February.
So many people have already failed at the goals they set in January.
So they feel bad about themselves, they judge themselves and they just quit altogether.
If that’s you, stand back up and take another crack at it, using the information that you’ve gathered in this failure.