Of course you’re afraid of failing. Your whole life, failure has been a definition. It’s a label that we slap on the work that you do to tell you if you’re good enough. And nobody wants to be a failure when it comes to the rest of their life after college.
But here’s the issue — failure in school is the polar opposite of failure in life.
In school, failing is the end of the journey. It doesn’t matter if it’s a test, a project, or a homework assignment. You already got your chance and you messed it up. There are no do-overs.
In life, failing is the beginning of the journey. Your job might be less ideal than you imagined. You didn’t get the project right on the first try. You let down a co-worker. All of these are examples of “failure” in life. But the key distinction is that you now have the opportunity to try again.
Less than ideal job? Figure out why — then move onto the next one
Project didn’t work out? Figure out why — then do it better the next time.
Let down a co-worker? Figure out why — then fix it.
In life, failure is our best teacher. It’s asinine to even begin to believe that we can prepare for everything that life will throw our way.
That’s true of school as well. Nobody figured out partial derivatives, complex molecules, or constitutional law on the first try. But the methods of school don’t translate well to life.
There is no textbook on passion.
There is no lecture series on building lasting friendships.
There is no dummies guide to finding a hobby.
In life, the only way to figure it out is to just start. And sometimes you don’t know where to start. If that’s the case — just start somewhere. Once you’re moving, you can change directions whenever you want. But if you’re just standing still you’re never going to get anywhere.
That said — if you have no clue what you want to do — we have some suggestions on where to start.