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Do you want to know the difference between a Master and a Beginner?  The Master has failed more times than the Beginner has ever tried.

Sage advice from film folk lore.  Nevertheless, it is still worthy of consideration.  Most of us learn by doing.  We are hands-on people, so we need to do things ourselves.  We do not always succeed.  But, the measure of success is to try again.

Now, you may have read “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

As it turns out, insanity might be crediting that quote to Einstein over and over again.  He never said it.  But it is a fun and appropriate quote nonetheless.

The point is to try again, but to try a different approach to the same problem.  Repeatedly trying the same approach over and over again will not lead to success.  But perseverance does lead to success, if you simply modify you perspective slightly.

Failure 3

Fate versus Destiny

If you look up the words, fate and destiny, the definitions sounds incredibly similar.  Some say that they are exactly the same thing, but I do not.  What I say is that fate is that which you cannot change. Whereas, destiny is that which you are meant to do. While fate is what happens when you do not take responsibility for your life, destiny is what happens when you commit to growing, learning, and taking chances.  Being “destined for greatness” only comes through active and conscious decisions.  So, you cannot control fate, but you can drive towards your own destiny.

Fail 5

Stop Blaming Yourself

Are you placing high demands on yourself?  That is great, but also stressful and frustrating because “perfection” simply does not exist and what is “ideal” for you is not necessarily “ideal” (or reality) for others (parents, teachers, bosses).  That is why you should stop blaming and punishing yourself just because your family, a college, or a corporation gave you their “disapproval”, because this does not mean you are not good enough.

Arthur Schopenhauer, a German philosopher, wrote that ‘What a man is contributes much more to his happiness than what he has or how he is regarded by others.’

Fail 2

Keep doing your Best

What can be worse than “failing”?  The answer is: not even trying.  ‘The master has failed more times than the beginner has even tried’, said Stephen McCranie.

If you stop trying or never begin in the first place simply because you either “fell down” before or are afraid of things going wrong, you will never know how it could have worked out.  The feeling of “what if…” will follow you day and night.

Of course, everybody starts a project in order to make it real; but if things do not work out like you wish due to external circumstances, you will be able to learn from this experience and know what you should change next time, how to take a different route or, what to look for in new goals (all of these options are, in my experience, freeing).

Fail 7

You are Constantly Growing

Are you the same as you were years ago?

After I changed jobs, I made a few ‘mistakes’, but I embraced them because they allowed me to become the person that I am now.  I can do things better than before and I know there is always something new to learn from future mistakes.

Every “fall” makes you stronger, as long as you are willing to get back up.  May this beautiful quote from the book “Siddhartha”, by Hermann Hesse, help you to keep it in mind: “We are not going in circles, we are going upwards.  The path is a spiral; we have already climbed many steps”.

Use each mistake as a way to build strength and courage. By embracing failure, you will become more comfortable with it as a part of your life and work.  Think about the most difficult challenge that you have overcome.  Use this as motivation that you can overcome what is happening now.

Looking at failure in a different way can be one of the most profound changes that you will make in your life.  The moment of failure sucks, but what you can gain from it might just transform your life.

fail 4

Know that you are interested in the long-term rewards of becoming the person you want to become.  Find joy in failing because the knowledge of such a thing means that you are even closer to your goals.  Anything worth doing or any goals worth having are worthy of failing at.  If you cannot fail at something then likely it is an uninspiring and fruitless path.  What I have found is that the fails lead to your greatest successes.

Fail more today so that you can succeed tomorrow.  Look back at your life and notice how just after you have failed, then came your biggest accomplishments.


Just, J. (2018). What is the difference between fate, coincidence and destiny? Quora. Retrieved September 18, 2019 from,

Schweier, S. (2019). 6 Reasons Why Embracing Failure Helps You Succeed. Lifehack. Retrieved September 18, 2019 from,

Shieldmaiden, H. (2016). 4 Reasons Why I’m Not Afraid to Fail and Why You Shouldn’t Be Either. recovery Warriors. Retrieved September 18, 2019 from,

About the Author:

Michael Martin has more than 35 years of experience in systems design for broadband networks, optical fibre, wireless, and digital communications technologies.

He is a business and technology consultant. Over the past 15 years with IBM, he has worked in the GBS Global Center of Competency for Energy and Utilities and the GTS Global Center of Excellence for Energy and Utilities. He is a founding partner and President of MICAN Communications and before that was President of Comlink Systems Limited and Ensat Broadcast Services, Inc., both divisions of Cygnal Technologies Corporation (CYN: TSX).

Martin currently serves on the Board of Directors for TeraGo Inc (TGO: TSX) and previously served on the Board of Directors for Avante Logixx Inc. (XX: TSX.V). 

He has served as a Member, SCC ISO-IEC JTC 1/SC-41 – Internet of Things and related technologies, ISO – International Organization for Standardization, and as a member of the NIST SP 500-325 Fog Computing Conceptual Model, National Institute of Standards and Technology.

He served on the Board of Governors of the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) [now OntarioTech University] and on the Board of Advisers of five different Colleges in Ontario.  For 16 years he served on the Board of the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE), Toronto Section. 

He holds three master’s degrees, in business (MBA), communication (MA), and education (MEd). As well, he has three undergraduate diplomas and five certifications in business, computer programming, internetworking, project management, media, photography, and communication technology. He has earned 15 badges in next generation MOOC continuous education in IoT, Cloud, AI and Cognitive systems, Blockchain, Agile, Big Data, Design Thinking, Security, and more.