FALL: Freedom for All to Live and Learn

Simon Sinek talks about the importance of being able to fall.

Thank goodness. Because I fall. I fall a lot.

I fell last week. It was a mistake, but I am responsible for it happening and for the upset that it caused. 

Even though I try my best to be a great leader by lifting others and shining a light on their path so they can succeed, sometimes I end up being an obstacle in their path. It doesn’t feel good to make a mistake or miss a mark or disappoint someone. That’s the first arrow.

But the second arrow is dwelling on that mistake instead of taking accountability, learning from it, dusting yourself off, and moving forward.  Like my mentor once said, “Take the hit, then, bounce.”

Check out this video of Simon sharing his view on “falling.” Simon Sinek on Falling

Did you know that Babe Ruth struck out more than 1300 times? History doesn’t dwell on that fact. History remembers his home runs. And Babe Ruth didn’t dwell on those strikeouts. In fact, his philosophy was that every strikeout brought him closer to his next home run.

The concept of being willing to fall reminds me of the universal celebration that erupts when a staff member drops a glass in a restaurant.

Crash…Hurray!

What happens at a restaurant when a server drops a glass and it shatters on the floor? 

Fellow restaurant staff cheer and clap! Why?  here’s my theory:

  1. Most people are just trying their to do their job to the best of their ability
  2. Everybody makes mistakes
  3. A team is a village that takes care of its own
  4. Take the hit, then bounceWhen we feel safe to FALL—to have the Freedom to Live and Learn without the fear of humiliation or loss of status, the world is a better place.

What would be different if next time you were to celebrate when you FALL?  The moment when something goes awry is a chance for the culture to be tested. Use it as an opportunity to demonstrate grace, invite experimentation, and celebrate the effort it takes to clean up and start again. And remember the Japanese art of Kintsugi, where we can become stronger in the broken places.