Life is Like a Game of Tetris
I was having a conversation with a friend awhile back and realize that life is like a game of Tetris. There are all of these pieces and situations coming at you constantly, and you have to try to make decisions quickly to fit them all together ...but you can’t always do it and you start to panic and that’s okay. There is a lesson to be learn with each missed move and you get to try again as long as you don't get frustrated and give up.
If you’ve ever played Tetris you understand what I’m talking about here. If you haven’t, please go to your App Store right now, download it, play it for a little while and then come back...it’s okay, I’ll wait.
Great! You're back and you've played and now you can follow along. Sweet!
You see, when you play Tetris, you aren’t always perfect. Sometimes the pieces don’t line up exactly or they shift in the last second before landing and you end up with holes in your plan. This is typically when anger sets in and you begin to panic. BUT the cool thing is that if you are mindful of your mistake quickly, you get another chance to set things right by adjusting your plan, clearing the messed up pieces and trying again to build without issues. If you just flat out panic, you fail and the game ends.
THAT is how I view failure.
Mistakes happen and you're going to fail in life. You can’t change the particular move that created the failure, but you can LEARN from it and apply that new knowledge to your next attempt and fix the problem so you can achieve your goal.
Will that new knowledge be perfect? Nope. Perfection doesn't exist, so please forget about being perfect. However, you’ll have another opportunity to try again and apply the knowledge that you gain from your past mistakes. This is how you make progress and things will flow smoother for you moving forward, as long as you keep trying, keep learning and keep applying your new knowledge. For more on perfection, check out this post: Perfection is a Myth
Now, on the flip side, if you DON’T learn a lesson from your mistake, things escalate quickly. It gets hectic, the music starts playing faster, pieces start dropping faster, your anxiety spikes your brain and your fingers are no longer communicating with each other and with each failed attempt you get more frustrated and frazzled until the bricks hit the top and you're out of chances.
This is what we want to avoid and we avoid that by LEARNING not ignoring.
When stuff doesn’t go as planned there’s a reason for it and it’s your job to figure out that reason. Pushing forward using the same technique without making adjustments just leads to anxiety and chaos because you are not adjusting and figuring out what isn't working. You can't fit a square block in a round hole, right? Stop trying to force things the way you think they should go. Take a step back, figure out why your approach wasn't working and try again. Not doing this simple act is why so many call it quits when they see GAME OVER and fail.
GAME OVER doesn't mean that you can't try again. It just means that you get to take a deep breath, take a step back, reassess and try again. Game Over isn't forever unless you decide to stop trying.