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How I Learned From Failure

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Knowledge is acquired from experience, experience is acquired from failure. I know this too well because I failed. I did not let that failure define who I was as a person and made decisions that would enable me to choose that path I would like to go down in life. It all began with the number 57. Getting a C in a subject you really wanted to ace is probably one of the worst things that could happen to you in secondary school. It came to me on the report card for the last term in form four. Next to Information Technology on the report card was a big, fat 57. Even though those marks did not affect my CSEC results which would decide if I were to graduate or not. I could have already seen my chances of a four-year college going up in smoke and my school year hadn’t even begun. What happened? I’m not a C student. I’ll get the occasional B as well as the occasional A. C’s are out of character for me, and enough of a stomach punch to really get my attention.

The short version is, I didn’t study, i failed to apply myself to my work and I was immature. There is always a reason not to study, isn’t there? Video games, social media and friends. I was all caught up in an illusion. At that time, I didn’t care about college or my future, I didn’t study, and I went into a test woefully unprepared and got chewed up and spat out the other end. I was a moron. I had two options here. I could accept that I was in fact a C student despite what I had thought. Or I could study hard and try to bring my grade up by actually doing my work. That day I made a promise to myself that that would be the lowest grade I would ever get in that subject during the rest of my secondary school life. I realized something important: while I had already forgotten the reason I didn’t study, I never forgot the grade. Thus, the grade itself was far more important than whatever it was I was doing insteadImagine, instead, if I had gotten a B or even a B+. It would have taken God’s will, but it could have happened. If this had happened, if I had succeeded rather than failed, I would have learned nothing. Or, at the very least, I would have learned that I didn’t have to study, which is the opposite of what a person should learn. Through a desire to be more than what I was and persistence I graduated at the top of my Information Technology class. This desire to do more and work harder for my goals also seeped into other subjects which allowed me to achieve all my secondary school goals as well as succeed in others. Had I not failed, I would have learned nothing. I might have done much worse on a later test and I may not have graduated since I “knew” studying was not important. Instead, by failing, I was able to realize my mistakes and rise from the ashes.

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