Is the opposite of failure – success ?
I got an interesting comment on my post on the fear of failure … “it is good to be afraid of failure, because that pushes us harder to succeed”. This started of a chain of thoughts….is there actually a risk in succeeding ?
I remember once a young cricketer who has played for the Indian team explaining why Sachin Tendulkar was not a good captain. He said :
“Sachin does not relate to what us young players go through. He has never had to goto sleep in the night worrying that if he fails the next morning, he might get dropped from the team. He does not know what pressure we go through”
He went on to add …. ” he is also not able to coach us because everything looks so simple to him, he can’t understand why we can’t play the shots the way he does. He does not understand that we are not Sachin ”
Perhaps if success comes too easily, or if we dont realise the effort and struggle we have gone through to succeed, we begin to ignore the perils of failure. We begin to underestimate what it takes to succeed. If we keep succeeding, without ever failing, we forget the taste of defeat, of failure. In such a situation, success can become our enemy. Success is what I would be afraid of.
But, if you are not afraid of failure, and you recognise the perils of success, one can raise the bar, make success more difficult to achieve…and this will push us harder. Success is no longer risky.
Fortunately, most of us are not Sachin Tendulkar. Success is not as simple as it looks for him. Fortunately for most us, success has never been our sole companion…..failure has walked with us in the shadows. As long as we walk with both, we should not be afraid of failure…..nor think of success as being risky !