Is it okay to keep on failing? Or should one practice perseverance?

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bhupendra

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I don't how to put this.
Every time I've done or do something good in life or succeeded at something in life my FOO start loading their expectations on me.
Why can't life be without any expectations? Expectations of others.
I know it's natural for people to hope from a person who does something successfully. Still it becomes a chore to fulfill their expectations.
I didn't have a healthy childhood where my personal boundaries were respected and I had an opportunity to develop my self.
Any time I go by what others want from me I start to submissively do it as an act of courtesy and then I get dragged in their situation as I become more vulnerable and then become an annoyance for them which in turn creates lots of misunderstanding or I just try to escape the situation making them feel confused. The reason I even accept their requests is because of social norms and I don't have any friends or social circle so any form of meaningful social interaction outside my FOO seems valuable.
Well, that was past. I'm developing my self. It's just that I try to test the waters longer than other people before putting myself out to others who come in my life. I study them in my initial interactions. And if I feel they are not worth interacting with or if the interaction could lead to the above mentioned scenario then they're better dealt with masks. There's too much emphasis on norm-al social interaction in today's society. Interaction which is and always will be taxing for me unless I wear masks to handle social situations. I can only be myself when I'm alone without much distractions, outdoors in nature or when I'm with children or with people whose personality I've studied for quite sometime even if they don't know me personally. Otherwise I'm very introverted.
Success and failure. Both of them sometimes feel the same when it comes to social interaction. If other people are taken into account failure in some aspects of my life offers me freedom from their expectations yet keeps me trapped in social isolation as I don't have a social circle to begin with and nobody would want to hang out with a failure. While any success creates expectations. I don't crave for having and making new friends like most other people do. I just think social interaction is better for long term health and cognition and I should make active efforts to do it.
 
Is it okay to just fail and keep on failing in life? Or is perseverance and practice a better strategy even if it means at times having to tactfully deal with other people and their expectations and being ready for unasked for challenges in the process?
I know these are questions with pretty straightforward answers.
I just wanted to know from people here at OOTS. What are your experiences in this regard? How has your successes and failures affected your relationships with people in your life? In your FOO and outside.

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Three Roses

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Re: Is it okay to keep on failing? Or should one practice perseverance?
« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2018, 04:48:41 PM »
Quote
I didn't have a healthy childhood where my personal boundaries were respected and I had an opportunity to develop my self.... The reason I even accept their requests is because of social norms and I don't have any friends or social circle so any form of meaningful social interaction outside my FOO seems valuable.

Success and failure are subjective. What is a success to some may be the very definition of failure to another.

In my opinion, in order to achieve success, I must first define it for what I think it is, and how that is expressed in my own life. Is service to others what is most important to me? Is a career what I find more fulfilling? As long as you are chasing someone else's ideals, for anything, I don't think you can truly be "happy" or fulfilled. Unless living up to others' expectations is your definition of success.

I saw this quote recently - "Failure is not the opposite of success; it's part of it."

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woodsgnome

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Re: Is it okay to keep on failing? Or should one practice perseverance?
« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2018, 07:53:29 PM »
Your experiences of difficulty in the social realm echoes a lot of my story. But I'm not sure how much of what I can share will provide any definitive help of the sort you want.

Following a horrible start to life, I sensed it would be hard for me to follow any other path but my own. It helped immensely that early on I fell into a mini-career of sorts oriented towards creativity combined with service. All of my subsequent employment involved these sorts of endeavours (non-profit as well). These provided some social contact but I built in ways to sustain my need for a good chunk of isolation, mainly in being able to live in a location that by itself is pretty isolated. Another part of this scenario is that I was often the manager or director of the activities I was involved with, so the expectations were largely set by me.

Now I find myself retired, which is great except now I don't even have minimal social contacts, for the most part. Being selective in who I feel comfortable around, I have tried reaching out a bit but have found it difficult without that built-in artistic field/connection I once was so good at. I've tried some tentative sorts of reaching out with no lasting results; I get discouraged easily, though, and that's part of the problem, plus I'm so wary of people in general I'm pretty limited to what I feel I might be safe with. I'm not super-courageous in that regard; was burned too often too early.

Success? Yeah, the creative artistic stuff was definitely that (mostly), especially in that I was fortunate to have enough independence and generally only my own expectations to deal with. Whenever I did have to adhere to others' expectations, I did alright but it was stressful, as my early years produced so much conflict that it made for this constant stress with regard to meeting other people's expectations.

For the most part, I'd go with just being whatever you feel is best for your circumstances, without regard to calling it failure or success. Let's just call it being yourself, above all other considerations. I also concur with your assessment about working to find the means "to tactfully deal with other people and their expectations and being ready for unasked for challenges in the process?" It's important, I've found, to be ready for surprises, too. Calling what comes up short a failure doesn't leave enough opening for the surprises, but being yourself and following your own impulses leaves that window open.

 :hug:

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bhupendra

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Re: Is it okay to keep on failing? Or should one practice perseverance?
« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2018, 03:00:53 PM »
Quote from: woodsgnome
Your experiences of difficulty in the social realm echoes a lot of my story. But I'm not sure how much of what I can share will provide any definitive help of the sort you want.
It's okay. I know what I have to do in that regard. I just wanted to know experiences of others here.
At times not having a social circle feels like progressing yet being stuck somewhere in life.
Sure I've my FOO who are much better than they were in the past. Still most of their tastes are much different than mine so I got no one to share my life and experiences with. We are not even on the same page when it comes to core ideologies, views on life, relationships, faith and political views. Other than blood relation and shared past experiences there isn't much in common between my FOO and I.

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LilyITV

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Re: Is it okay to keep on failing? Or should one practice perseverance?
« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2018, 06:41:41 PM »
I relate to everything you've posted, so I'm going to respond with some of the positive self-talk I engage in when I'm feeling like I'm failing at life.

As long as you are still trying, you are not failing.  You are a beautiful work in progress.  So if you are concerned about failing, then keep trying.  You're also not a failure if you reevaluate your goals and determine you'd be happier going in a different direction.  Maybe the goal wasn't worthwhile to begin with.

I also relate to the angst over my social interaction.  I am 44, and I've always considered myself to be an introvert, but now after being treated for C-PTSD, I'm not so sure anymore.  I used to view social interactions as a kind of a test, and of course I always gave myself a failing grade.   If you view it that way, then of course you're not going to enjoy being around people.  But now I'm starting to develop boundaries and focus on myself instead of other people's reactions and expectations.  I'm finding social interactions much more enjoyable and I'm slowly coming out of my shell.  I'm still not quite sure whether I'm an introvert or extrovert, but I'm not sure it matters.  The focus should be on what makes you happy. 

I will caveat that I do think whether you are an introvert or extrovert, as human beings, we need some degree of social interactions to thrive.  Some need less than others, but we all need it to live our best lives. 

I wrote the above before I read everyone else's responses, but I love how we all basically saying the same thing in different ways.