Feeling a little down? Like your star hasn’t risen high enough? What about your kids? How are you doing with the idea of letting them occasionally bump into a brick wall or two? It’s hard, isn’t it?
It’s difficult to watch our loved ones solve their own problems, but I still think it’s a whole lot easier to fall on our faces with a loving family standing by to pick us up. Who else is going to remind us: failure is an experience — not a person?
Remember, Randy Pausch and The Last Lecture? In it he said, “The brick walls are there for a reason. The brick walls are not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something. Because the brick walls are there to stop the people who don’t want it badly enough. They’re there to stop the other people.”
When faced with an obstacle we often get so focusing on solving a specific problem that we blind ourselves to other solutions. A brick wall can represent an opportunity to step back and begin again, even better.
Sometimes a lateral move will be enough to get us around the obstacle — but we can’t stand and stare, nose pressed against it, obsessed with “what’s wrong” and expect to see something different, can we?
Here are a few examples of people who learned how to bounce:
- Creative genius Walt Disney was once fired because he “had no good ideas.”
- Music legend Elvis Presley was banned for the Grand Ole Opry after only a single performance. He was reportedly told, “You aint’ goin’ nowhere, son.”
- The work of legendary children’s author Dr. Seuss was initially rejected by 27 different publishers. His work has sold more than 600 million copies.
- Vera Wang tried for a spot on the Olympic ice skating team and a stint as a writer before becoming a world-renown designer.
When you let your kids develop problem-solving skills you’re giving them bricks. Will they use them to build walls or dreams?