Your mistakes do not represent you

You feel as though you have swallowed a rock, your throat thick and your head spinning for just a second, the moment you admit defeat. The moment you failed.

I have those moments often, and I think of the people I let down or how bad the situation is, how much I kick myself mentally and tear up angrily because things could have been so much better.

But those moments do not define me, or you either for that matter.

We are more than our mishaps, but it is so easy to forget that in a society striving for perfection presented to us through every social network and media outlet possible.

It is inevitable that life will hit hard and that you will let yourself or others down. It is inevitable you will know what was right two seconds too late and groan at the thought that things just went entirely wrong. It is inevitable people will leave you for your failures and you will lose the support of those you thought would back you entirely.

But that does not make you worthless. Instead, it gives you an opportunity for a beautiful change.

I have seen the darker sides of life several times and have buckled under the weight of stress during a few, but I have also always found a way to claw myself out, exhausted with my knuckles bleeding — but so alive, and so ready to start over.

The beauty of loss, of failure, is that it gives you the chance to hit the bottom and rebuild once more. Sure, the structure may be different and it may be difficult — no one says it’s not — but it also may be the best thing to have happened.

You get the unique opportunity to change something that was not working and find a better avenue of life. People die, friends leave and jobs will find you dispensable, but you have the power to not lose yourself in the midst of it all. You are not defined by the times you are wrong, even if someone tries to convince you of that. Most great historical figures are remembered for their triumphs after all.

The greatest pieces of cinema are not produced in one take. It requires months of work, frustration and money to make something you can watch in two hours. Hundreds of hours of work are boiled down into 120 minutes, and that is remarkably comforting to know.

One day when you feel your chest is heavy and your fingers tingle from the anxiety of your incompetence, just remember the person you let down has been in that exact situation as well. We are all incompetent to some degree in something, and really, that’s OK because you’re also amazing at something else. You just may have to find it.

Happiness is not guaranteed and perfection is not promised, but failure is inevitable, so own that truth and make it a positive thing.

About Chloe Tokar

Managing Editor

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