You hear all the time the question: What would you do if you knew you could not fail? I think the more powerful question though is:
What would you do anyway even if you knew you would fail?
Why this question? Because if you did something knowing it would fail, but you were motivated to keep going anyway, that would show true love, true admiration, a true commitment to the work. You then aren’t in it for the results. You aren’t in it for the prestige, the fame, the fortune, the admiration, the praise, or the recognition. You are in it just because you love the work so much.
What’s ironic is that in that state, there is no possibilty of you failing because simply being able to do the work is your success.
I once heard Tarana Burke, the creator of the #MeToo Movement, say on stage at one of those prestigious conferences, you have invited me to the Emmy’s, Grammies, the Oscars, to all these fancy parties. I know at some point, you’ll move on and those invitations will dry up. I’m not doing this work for you. I was doing this work in community centers and church basements long before this and if I need to continue to do that work there, I will again, as I am about the work.
The Movement started in 2006 and did not get worldwide recognition until 2017. If Tarana had been doing this work for any other reason besides her believing in this work, it would never have had the impact that it has for billions of people around the world. Maybe she thought at times, it may fail or that no one will really care, but because she was so resolute because she was going to do this work whether it succeeded or not because felt compelled to do this work, that is why it has had the impact that it has had.
So, I ask the question again:
What type of work are you willing to do even if you knew it would fail?
Once you are able to figure out that answer, you find out what makes you come alive. Because, frankly, that is the type of work the world needs from you right now .
Originally published at https://www.rediscoveryourplay.com on December 20, 2020.