Have you ever talked with someone who justifies their failure with, “I might have failed, but I learned so much.” 

What exactly is it, though, that they claim to have learned?

In my opinion, if failure can’t be translated into future success (or at least comprehensively articulated into why an attempt didn’t work, so strategy can be adjusted for subsequent efforts) then the phrase “I learned so much” is devoid of worth.  It becomes the equivalent of a hollow platitude:  a positive-sounding statement that possesses negative value, because it functions as an excuse to avoid investigating the failure and sharpen thought processes, which only serves to strengthen the problem.

32 thoughts on “Musings

    • Yeah, but failure that doesn’t lead to success is usually the default outcome, from what I’ve seen. If it DOES lead to success in some way or manner, then I’d say they definitely learned something useful.


  1. Ugh. I’m an assist. An emergency contact. You tell me the problem, and I come up with the solution. I’m a consultant, not a leader. I don’t know what the eff I’m doing… I’m a lecherous leech, I absorb observations and reprocess them to be calibrated for the present problem. Uuuuuugggghhhhh

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  2. Other potential hollow platitudes along the same vein: If I only knew then what I know now; we all make mistakes; hindsight is 20/20. I’ve heard all these utterances from mouths attached to faces on skulls encapsulating brains that have failed to learn a thing as evidenced by predictable behaviour.

    Nice musing!

    Liked by 3 people

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