Fail Better

Fail better.
Image from QuotesCover

Long ago, I owned a t-shirt with this quote on it, and the quote became my favorite. It was from grad school, specifically the MFA Creative Writing program at the university. I wish I knew what happened to the t-shirt. I’m pretty sure they’re no longer available.

I first learned of Samuel Beckett in high school. Some friends and I saw a play called Waiting for Godot, and I remember that it impacted me. The gist of it, to me, was that you can always sit around waiting for something that may never happen; or you can get off your ass and do something about it. Simplistic, but that’s how I understood it.

Beckett didn’t come up again until grad school, believe it or not, in the form of the above quote on a t-shirt. And it impacted me in much the same way as the play did. At the time, I was sending out poems, poems, and more poems to various literary journals for publication. All I received were rejections, rejections, and more rejections. Failure. Because of this quote, I was able to put the rejections behind me and start again. I was ready to fail better.

Is there a quote that you love?

14 thoughts on “Fail Better

  1. I love that quote you posted! Too bad you can’t find the shirt.
    You’de think of all the quotes I post, I would have a favorite… Sad, but I don’t. I seem to find meaning in just about all of them. Some impact me in different ways, as well as the mood I’m in. (I don’t know if that makes a bit of sense)… But, then again, I haven’t been making much sense lately. 🙄

    1. It totally makes sense. Though I am surprised you don’t have a favorite or favorites.

  2. This is beautiful! I love this “fail better” quote A LOT- thank you for sharing the quote and what you gained from the play. Rather than fear of failure paralyzing us, it’s great to think of failing as taking ownership of our lives, of doing something, trying and trying again. Love it.

    1. I’m glad you like it! I especially like the notion of “failing as taking ownership.”

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