Somebody once said the difference between a big shot and little shot is that the big shot was the little shot who kept on shooting. There’s much truth in that witticism. The reality is, no matter what our target might be, we seldom hit it on the first try unless the target is low, which means the accomplishment–and the rewards–will be insignificant.
In bow shooting, experienced archers test the wind by using the first shot to judge its strength and direction, enabling them to zero in on the target with their following shots. In short, archers learn from their mistakes. That’s good advice for all of us. Success in business, athletics, science, politics, etc., seldom comes on the first effort. Walt Disney went bankrupt a number of times and had at least one nervous breakdown before he made it big. Athletic skills are acquired over a long period of time and after countless hours of practice. Authors by the hundreds can tell you stories by the thousands of those rejection slips before they found a publisher who was willing to “gamble” on an unknown.
It’s more than just a cliché that persistent, enthusiastic effort produces powerful, positive results, that failure is an event–not a person–and that the only time you must not fail is the last time you try. Whatever your target might be, chances are good that you’re not going to hit the bull’s eye on the first effort you make at being “successful.” The key is persistence and the willingness to try again in the face of those early misses.
You can learn from those early mistakes and if you do keep on shooting, it’s just a question of time before you, too, are hitting the bull’s eye.