You Will Fail

Three weeks ago my wife and I had our first parent teacher meeting to go over our son’s progress over the first quarter of the year. 

His teacher Mrs. Johnson commented how dedicated and immersive Mandy was with his lessons. She observed the leadership role he takes with the other students in the class. She expressed how smart he is and then she showed me the progress report.

He had no “A’s” or “B’s” on his progress report.

I was concerned...Then I fell in love

Mandy goes to Coral Reef Montessori School and they don’t use the traditional grading system of A’s, B’s, C’s, D’s, and F's.

They use the following metrics to track a child’s progress: I - Introduced | P - Practicing | IM - Improving | M - Mastery.

When a lesson is first introduced, the student receives an I for Introduced. After the student has been practicing the lesson they get upgraded to P for Practicing. As they improve on the lesson they will be bumped up to IM for Improving. Finally, when they can consistently dominate the lesson in many different forms they are awarded an M for Mastery. This can happen over the course of a year in certain lessons or can happen over the course of 1-2 sessions depending on the child’s proficiency. The brilliance of this system is that it focuses on mastery not just passing a test, very much like life.

Use this approach to have long term success with your health, your goals, and anything in your life you wish to succeed at.

Mastery is defined as, a comprehensive knowledge or skill in a subject or accomplishment. It is a control or superiority over someone or something.

I believe mastery is what we should all be striving for in all facets in our lives. Mastery is a journey and as such will have its ups and downs, as well as it’s wrong turns and obstacles. The wealth of any journey is the experiences that makes it up. In mastery those experiences are enhanced by your failures.

The statement attributed to Apollo Missions director, Gene Kranz, “Failure is not an option,” when taken literally will rob you of mastery if you fear being wrong.

Your mastery mantra should be “Failure is your best option.”

To put it in context Michael Jordan arguably the best basketball players in the world said,

"I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

What would you need to believe, so that failure becomes something you embrace?

How can mastery become your focus instead of weight loss or getting good grades?

Strive to become a master of your life, your health, and your communication by taking one step towards it daily.

When times get tough and obstacles seem to block any possible path towards achieving mastery, remember that every attempt is giving you the experience points needed to level up.

Cheers,
Armando

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