Failing Forward - and Never Looking Back

by Cathy Rosell
(Santa Monica, California)

Hi! I'm Cathy and a junior college student here in California. I love your site and I thought I'd share a recent experience.


My professor gave my group a classic novel to be adapted into a school play and I was assigned to lead the scripting.

People have said that I am a pretty good writer but the real problem is; I lacked the confidence to discuss my visions in a more elaborate, vivid way with others, including my professor.

People in the play kept on asking me to explain what I meant about 'this and about that' and every time I tried to answer, I felt like my tongue was twisted in a knot.

It wasn't that I didn't know what I'd written, it's just that I tended to freeze when I knew everyone was listening to me.

This has really been a problem over the past few years.

The good news is that my professor was so kind and understanding, she helped me wriggle my way out the confusion, and I am now feeling better about expressing myself to the group.

The end result has been that I do feel my vision for the script has been put into words and came out nicely as enacted by the various players.

I'm actually proud to say that I believe the play went on and it was a success. My classmates and teacher were all pleased by the outcome.

Ya know, I suddenly realized that we should NEVER be afraid of failing, because it’s just natural that we should fail - especially early on in our early experiences.

We’re just humans and if we do fail, so what?

There’s always a chance to correct it, right?

I’m just so happy because now that I'm a bit more confident in putting myself out there, even though I know I may fall on my face, I know I'm learning, and getting better, every step of the way.

Who knows, maybe next year I will be assigned for a bigger play, something like Romeo and Juliet!

By the way, thanks for this page, just taking a minute to write out my thoughts, helped me come to the above conclusion.

I hope some other 'scare-dy-cat' will see this and it will, in some way, encourage them to "go for it!" - regardless of what might happen.

Thanks for listening.

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Step Out to Get Ahead
by: Richard Gorham

Cathy, congrats on your recent victory - over yourself, that is. :-)

I know the struggle one can have in speaking in front of a group. It happened to me at my High School graduation. I was to introduce our commencement speaker, a U.S. Senator no less.

Thank goodness I had the introduction written down on paper, because I just about 'swallowed my tongue' when I first attempted to speak. Whew!

But enough about me, YOU DID IT! And now, you know that the PAYOFF you get after you do something outside your comfort zone, is bigger than the COST to you if you fail to try.

I'm proud of you! Thank you for sharing your story with us.

Now, just keep on taking those extra steps, because now you know that in order to get ahead, you have to step up and step out.

Note: Cathy, a special thanks also for taking the giant leap to be the FIRST to contribute your experience on this page for the benefit of our other readers. I'm excited to hear what other great leadership related stories our readers will share.

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