Write It Down!

Do not be embarrassed by your failures, learn from them and start again.

-Richard Branson


You may find the irony in the title of this post, as it has been awhile since I’ve last written in this blog, but I wanted to speak of a piece of advice that constantly sticks out in my head whenever I think of entrepreneurs and habits of success. In specific I am referring to when I read “The Virgin Way: Everything I Know About Leadership” by famed entrepreneur and Virgin Company Founder, Richard Branson.

Honestly it was probably at the beginning of the year when I read the book but a key lesson or note that Branson brings up in his pseudo biography is the power of writing things down.

The human brain is an amazing piece of equipment, but at the same time, has it’s limitations. No matter what, you will never be able to remember EVERY single little thing. It’s just not going to happen. Even things you deem important at the time of occurrence, you will have a chance of forgetting. And the moment you forgot something. It disappears. The lesson you could of learned from, the amazing idea, spark of ingenuity. Buried.

Branson attributes a large amount of his success to writing things down. From ideas that come up, to failures that occur. He refers to a permanence that is created to whatever thought that existed the moment you write it down.

Yes, things happen that we simply want to forget happened. However if you ignore a failure of some sort instead of correcting it, you are bound to make that same failure again. There’s a quote that goes something like “Failure is okay, as long as you do it quickly, cheaply and learn from it.”

There is such a created stigma nowadays surrounding failure. It’s okay to fail! In fact you want to fail, as crazy as it sounds. How will you ever get better if you never fail?

Take that failure, write it down. Make it permanent. And when you can, go over it. Don’t sweep in the annuls of history. Don’t forget. Address it. Why did I fail? What went wrong? How do I improve myself to make sure that if I’m in that situation, that next time I will succeed.

Perhaps it’s noting something that you didn’t know before but want to learn more about. Perhaps it’s even something that you succeeded in. There’s power to reviewing what went right and understanding why.

Every time you do not write something down and forget it, you miss a chance to be improve. To be better. You want to succeed? Be better. Know the “whys” behind your failures and be active in fixing them.

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