The Failure Bow

Yesterday I made myself a nice salad for lunch.  Mixed greens, honey roasted chicken, shredded cheese, bell peppers and a homemade balsamic dressing.  I was really excited to savor it, to taste its goodness.  I grabbed an empty glass to pour myself a glass of water and set it down next to my salad.  Then I took the britta filter and started to pour out the clear refreshing water… INTO MY SALAD.  Crap!  I can’t believe I did that!  I cringed internally.  Why am I so dumb?  I quickly corrected my mistake and poured into the right container, then I ate my soggy salad.

Have you ever beat yourself up over making a mistake?  Maybe it was a big one, maybe it was a little one…  Me too.  Frequently in fact, and I am just starting to get some sense that perhaps there is a better way to respond than my typical internal beat down.

I believe that Jesus died for my sins and rose from the dead and because of that I am covered by His grace.  But that fact always seems to feel pretty hard to grasp right after I have made some kind of mistake.  There is new research that suggests how we respond with our bodies (a deep bow with a goofy grin vs. cringing or curling up into a ball) will affect how we feel in our minds.  Its called the failure bow.

So next time we make mistakes, lets celebrate them with a bow.

And for those of you who might wish to make a culture change in your organization. Consider this variation from Ted DesMaisons:

I invite my students to come up in front of the group one at a time, root themselves firmly on stage with a good, wide, athletic stance and a playful smile. Each movement from there will get its own bold assertion.

1) Extending the right arm out in a bold sweep: I took a risk!

2) Extending the left arm in similar fashion: I messed up!

3) Bringing their fingers to the chest: I’m still here!

4) Flinging both arms out and raising them triumphantly to the sky: Let’s learn!

And, of course, we’ll respond with wild applause.

For all of the mistakes you have learned from in the course of your life, I applaud you.


Lets try this again

Its been a while since I last blogged.  The past year has been one of the best in my life so far, but it has also been a pretty busy one… so given that it is the summer now, I thought I would give blogging another try.  I am also hoping to produce more art over the summer so perhaps I will post some of that as well.

Recently what I have been learning is that I have been trained (by several hard years of life) to expect the worst and that that is not actually what God wants for me.  It has been a thing that has, for lack of a better word, impeded my ability to receive the good things that God is giving me.  This year has been abut learning to give up that training and enjoy life to its fullest (without worrying that soon the other shoe will drop).  I want to fully enjoy everything that God has for me and celebrate the good in life.  I hope you learn what it looks like for you to do that too. Sometimes it starts with as simple a thing as appreciating the beauty around you.