Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Falling Down

Monday morning, I ran into one of my favorite coworkers in the elevator. We talked about how lovely the weather was over the weekend.

He said that he used the sunshine to try and teach his daughter how to ride her bike. I asked how it was going. He said, “Not that well. She hasn’t fallen yet. She’s so afraid of it, and once she falls she can get back up and move on.” I giggled and shared that in the biker world, some people won’t consider you a real rider until you’ve laid your bike down. (Ironically, I earned my stripes in the parking lot at work. I was going to park on a hill, but faced the wrong way – my kickstand was uphill. But I discovered that day that I can pick my bike up on my own (hoo rah), hurting only my pride in the process.)

Anyway, it got me thinking: How fear can keep us from moving forward. Even how a fear of falling short of perfection can actually hinder us from the joy of the ride. I wonder if we get in our own way sometimes because we’re afraid of that fall. We forget that until you realize that you *can* fall, and get back up again, you really haven’t learned to ride.

Most of the time, falling isn’t failing. Getting scraped up, and having the courage to get back up is all part of learning and growing. Failing is refusing to get back up (or maybe even refusing to take the risk).

I did a quick search and found a few quotes on the subject:
  • “If you're not failing every now and again, it's a sign you're not doing anything very innovative.” ~ Woody Allen
  • “Good counsel failing men can give, for why? He that's aground knows where the shoal doth lie” ~ Benjamin Franklin
  • “Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

What fall do you fear? Can you find the courage to let go and ride?


  1. Hmmm...what a great thought...we are all so afraid of falling. But how can we truly know our strength unless we have to pick ourselves up every now and then. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Thank you for this post Regina ~ definitely some (good) food for thought in it. I'm resisting moving forward in a couple areas....but I shouldn't, because even if I go "splat", there's nothing that says I can't give it another try.