Failure or Feedback?
Everyone has had a moment…that moment. That moment where you fail to perform. Your desire is beyond your ability to execute and you find yourself unable to perform.
You might fail to stand up a weight, get tripped up by a rope, or find yourself pulling with all you’ve got and that chin ain’t going over the bar no matter what. Even proficient athletes have moments where they don’t perform at the rate or level they should due to lacking technique. Perhaps you hammered out sets of 10 shoulder to overhead but you should be able to go unbroken through the workout. Ever met a guy with a huge deadlift and an itty bitty snatch???
These moments of failure are emotionally charged and they are hard. They punch you in the gut and take the wind out of your sails. Some people have a moment like this, take quick stock of things, and pack up their toys. They didn’t prepare for adversity, they don’t like being uncomfortable,and they tap out.
But is that really failure? Or is the take away from these moments not failure at all, but feedback?
When you were born you couldn’t walk. When you started school your math skills sucked, and at one moment in time, you didn’t even have language. Failure, feedback, and new growth is a part of the human cycle and it is absolutely a part of CrossFit. If you’re comfortable and you’re not hitting some walls at the gym, you’re not embracing the full spectrum of functional fitness and what it has to offer you. It is meant to surprise you and it is meant to help you prepare for the unknown and unknowable. But that means taking on some risk and hazarding some short term pain for the long term gain.
If you are working on something you’re good at, we probably shouldn’t be working on it. Sometimes, we as coaches are prouder to see you fail than to succeed. It takes grit to fail. It takes courage to fail. It takes tenacity to work through that failure, to roll up your sleeves and get to work because you’re on the cusp of something great.
In the end, there’s three ways to deal with failure:
As Tony Robbins says, “Success leaves clues”. Follow the breadcrumbs and turn adversity into advantage.