Scott Adams How To Fail and Still Win Big book

Read this over the weekend, what a treat! Creator of Dilbert talks about his life, which features a medical problem related to voice. For several years he simply couldn’t speak. No big deal – one might say – a cartoonist can still speak through his art, right? With so much texting, gaming and blogging more people then ever in history can spend their days fully immersed in communication  without uttering a sound. Yet Adams became profoundly unhappy. He could no longer do speaking engagements, talk on the phone, order a meal. Just did not feel fully human.

He found a solution to the problem in a “can do” way that I admire. He did not accept expert opinions.  He made full use of the God-like powers of the internet to find information the moment it became available – apparently, there is an app for that. He found his solution.

I associate “can do” approach with America, although there are people who practice it in every culture. These people are delightful to be around, as they can infect you with optimism and energy. Adams is especially helpful as he reinterprets the whole notion of failure. In his view a failure is a step forward. Towards victory, success? Not quite so. “Goals are for losers”. The better way to function, in his opinion, is to have your victory every day by maintaining happy and healthy lifestyle, looking forward to bright future and using affirmations to make it happen.

I’ve never been a big fan of affirmations, at some point thought “affirmations are for losers”. If you have to affirm something, like “I am rich and powerful” it just means that you are not. But I have experienced the power of wishful thinking. Yes, many times! This kind of situation when you think: (sigh) “Wouldn’t it be nice if xyz happened…” And the next day it does happen! I always interpreted it as a non-binding invitation for the friendly Universe to take action. It has to be very lighthearted; you mustn’t be desperate. Over the years I observed that God (?) is very much like a human being and is put off by whining, blackmail and emotional manipulation. But if you just ask nicely, that’s another story.

Good to be reminded of this kind of magic! (No magic – says Adams, but we know better!)