By Sphumelele Cele

[everyone calls her Pumi]

At some point in our lives, failure isn’t an option but a certainty.

You WILL get booed off stage, those birds WILL do a number on your windscreen and sometimes you WILL be picked last. This, is as certain as death and taxes.

My recent epic fail

“We need your company to send us someone more knowledgeable to train us. You are ill prepared, incompetent and this is a waste of time for us.” The sales manager diplomatically made this known to me.

I felt like disappearing in between the floor boards.Turning thumbs down into a thumbs up!

But I immediately started packing up and assured him that arrangements will be made for a different person to conduct the training.

The eight attendees also made their way out of the boardroom, disapproving faces in tow.

Perspective is everything

As I drove out of the office park I realised the adjacent golf estate looked familiar. I recently attended an Inspiration Indaba there a few months ago. The company hosting the event ran a competition where the best article on the subject of inspiration won the pricey ticket and also get got a chance to listen to stories of how ordinary people worked their way up to achieve extraordinary feats.

I was the author of the best article.

I forced my mind to replay that victory and it moved me, even if less than an inch, to a more positive frame of mind. I was able to take myself back to the drawing board and acknowledge that I’m driving away with these lessons;

– Outliers

The Malcolm Gladwell book that states that greatness requires enormous time and the concept that it generally takes 10 000 hours to make an expert, immediately came to mind. At my previous work I spent over a year giving in-house training first before going out to clients. So I needed to be patient, put in the amount of time into learning day by day and gain the experience.

– No No No…

Sometimes allowing yourself to be thrown into the deep dark end can do more harm than good. I over promised and did not realistically consider if I was ready for the task, my actions could have harmed my company’s image to the client. Saying No, is sometimes best.

Perseverance is everything

But as far as training goes or anything else I intend on tackling, this quote by Theodore Roosevelt is my war cry… “Credit belongs to the man who was in the arena…who errs to come short and short again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming.”

So whatever it is you may have got wrong, failed and blundered in, be kind to yourself, put things into perspective and soldier on.

About the Author

A Client's view about her experience being coached by TelanaPumi is thriving and working toward all things that better her life.
She’s a consultant by day.
By nightfall she’s a blogger and writer who intends to reach women with the motto “Fill your cup first, Take care of yourself first.”
Image courtesy of Ambro /