Ping-Pong & Churchill

Failure comes to us everyday in different sizes. Right from failing to get up on time all the way to failing a course that nearly sets you a year back.

It’s a fascinating experience. I say this not to sound philosophical, but given what happened about an hour ago. I failed to pass my driving test. For the third time. Has someone ever said the words, “Third time’s the charm?”

The charm of the third try is greatly exaggerated. Do not believe it.

-Harry

On the way back, I asked myself why I messed up? I practised driving smoothly almost every day. For context, I’m learning to drive stick. I always had problems starting on an inclined road. So I worked on that this past week. Made my inclined start silky smooth.

Went for the test. Got to an inclined road. Stopped for a sign. Shifted to first. Balanced it perfectly and started up the hill smoothly. I finally conquered that slope. In five more minutes, I’d be done.

After four minutes, a car parking took me down.

As waves of Middle Eastern heat and disappointment washed over me, I had an epiphany. I lost my focus. That was what went wrong. It was just like Ping Pong. Yeah, I said Ping Pong. Here’s how. Whenever I’m able to return a particularly tough shot from my opponent, I do a momentary victory dance inside. This makes me lose focus and at times, the game. That was exactly what happened. I’d say the lesson is, don’t lose sight of the end goal. No matter how many mini-hurdles you cross.

As I concluded that self-analysis stage, there was still that disappointment to deal with. That’s where Churchill comes in. He said, “Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.” I gladly took his advice, and I invite you to do the same. Failure comes everyday, but there’s still stuff that comes after. After a bad exam, there’s usually three more. Don’t let your future suffer the woes of your past. And that’s about as philosophical I get for the day.

Toodles!