Today is International Day of Failure— isn’t that the absolute best thing you’ve ever heard?
An entire day dedicated to reveling in all the things that didn’t go according to plan.
A day, according to NationalToday.com that “encourages people to try new and daring things; motivates and inspires others to succeed through sharing stories of successful people, their failures on their way up.”
A day that eliminates the unrealistic, unrelenting, and unattainable pressures of perfection and grants us permission to celebrate every step of the journey.
I am here for ALL of this. It’s what The Soft Never is all about. We believe that every day should be International Day of Failure. In this space, we shift the lens on the things we think define us to rewrite our own narratives, change the course of our own futures, and celebrate every step of the journey. The good, the bad, the battle — and every single moment in between.
I know firsthand that everything changes the moment we finally understand that failure isn’t something we should be afraid of — it’s something we should learn from. Even, or maybe especially, when some lessons are a lot harder to learn than others.
One of my very toughest lessons? When I first started my own copywriting business (which technically I really had no business starting as I had precisely ZERO copywriting experience) I landed a gig writing press releases.
I wrote my first piece and turned it into the editor, who not only got so tired of crossing out each individual word in my piece that they eventually just put a giant red “X” over the entire article — but they actually wrote the word “OUCH” in giant letters in the margin.
My initial reaction — utter mortification.
I thought ALL the things we think when we fail, which really boils down to a million different flavors of “I suck” and “I can’t.”
Eventually I had to change my inner dialogue. First, to recognize that I was placing way too much of my own power in the hands of someone else. I knew I was supposed to be a writer — one bad (albeit thoroughly horrifying) edit was not going to steal that from me.
And second I thought, maybe I really did suck NOW.
But everyone has to start somewhere — and this was not where I was ending.
Twelve years later, I am a Vice President of Content at a Growth Marketing Company, overseeing all of the copy we create.
Maybe I got lucky. Maybe my boss made a bad decision. Or, maybe it’s something more.
Maybe, it’s one of the secrets of failure. Too often we view failure as this scary, solid, and impenetrable thing.
But failure isn’t finite — it’s fluid.
At least, it’s fluid for as long as we keep picking ourselves up, brushing ourselves off, and moving ourselves forward.
The failure cement simply can’t set as long as we keep learning, keep building, and keep refusing to let someone or something else define the final destination in our journey.
TODAY’S SOFT NEVER
Today we’re Soft Nevering the belief that we can never pick ourselves back up after a failure. Every day should be International Day of Failure! Here’s to recognizing that failure is simply part of the process — and granting ourselves full permission to lean into and learn from every mistake, misstep, and miscalculation.
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