Let People Fail on Their Own

This is a simple principle that I was fortunate enough to learn at a young age. If anyone is to believe, know, understand or accept anything, they must come to those outcomes on their own terms. Say what you will, but from my experiences, too often, others are too ready to tell me what I can and cannot do, what is true and what is false. I must know for myself, I must see for myself and I must experience for myself.

This principle has time and time again proved to teach me better than anything else imaginable. If I must know, I must discover myself. I cannot take anyone else’s word or findings on any matter. If I do, then I am simply believing people at their word. Like my parents told me time and time again, look it up for yourself.

I must fail on my own, if I am to believe anything.


26 thoughts on “Let People Fail on Their Own

  1. It’s true, but is it Always true? I mean, do you really need to put your hand in the fire in order to know that it burns? Do I really need to have unprotected sex and expose myself to the risk of STDs or HIV in order to learn how to use condoms? I agree with you when you say that we learn better when we experience Something, but I also think that other people’s experience is there to teach us Something. What I disagree with is wanting to overprotect someone by preventing them to have experiences. As it’s sometimes (often?) done with children, or even adults. Overprotecting a person never helps them learn on their own and doesn’t help develop Curiosity.
    Did you have anything specific on your mind when you wrote this article? Maybe we can discuss your examples 😉

    1. bottomlesscoffee007

      I agree, it all comes with whatever I need to know myself. The more that people tell me I cannot succeed, the more I want to.

      I was more or less trying to say, you must let people decide and prove to themselves, if they are to truly believe. Whether it’s a feat of strength and endurance or changing society. If you want someone to believe something to be true, you must let them come to those conclusions on their own terms. If you don’t, they might simply placate you to avoid confrontation.

      “You can’t do this and you can’t do that” in my mind is expressed simply because the person saying that couldn’t. Let people come to their own conclusions on their own terms in their own time.

      You must let people fail on their own, so they can succeed on their own. Independence and freedom to decide and choose for oneself.

      1. I see better, you are talking on the level of “intelligence”, not necessarily the actions. Ok. You are right, letting someone express their power makes them feel confident that they can do things on their own. For example when I was a student my dad helped me a lot, financially speaking. When I graduated he still continued for a few months, and I noticed that although this situation was comfortable for me, it did not allow me to grow as the adult I was becoming, I didn’t feel independent, and I felt that I needed to ask him to stop helping me this much, so that I could “fail” or “succeed” by myself. That’s when I started to feel that I was in control of my life.

  2. I do listen. But then I assess, and come up with my own conclusion.
    I’m still working on not telling others what to do. I think I’m getting better at it. They won’t listen if they don’t want to/ aren’t ready, anyway.

  3. Before I read your post, seeing the title made me think it was going to be more sinister. You know how sometimes you see people walking into fire and you just try screaming, but they think you’re crazy, and they just keep walking until they get burned alive? Some people don’t listen to words of reason, and blindly plow ahead. Letting them fail on their own leaves you without competition with no shade cast upon you.

  4. It’s hard though to let someone you love plunge head first into what is so obviously a mistake. It takes a lot of work on ourselves. I’m Learning this as a new mom, I won’t Always be there for my kid, he will need, have to experience, fall, get back on his feet, all I need to do is be there for him and let him know I love him. But it crushes my heart already even if he is still little.

  5. There are those that can benefit from the wisdom of those that came before them…depending upon material, of course. Then, there are those that are just kinetic learners. Put your hands (brain) to it…

    Plus, much of individual learning is dependent upon perspective. Ten people can witness an accident & tell ten different stories about it.

    Then, there is the other side. Some topics…some things…I have no interest in. That comes under “I will take your word for it.”

  6. That is very true! Experience is the best teacher, I’ve heard somewhere. Sometimes we just have to let people do it so they can learn one way or the other.

    1. bottomlesscoffee007

      Same with me, there are some things I just must try or do on my own. I may be successful or I may fail. If I am constantly protected from exploring or discovering, I will never truly know in my heart.

      1. With me, if anyone tells me I am not strong enough to lift something or do something, it’s like waving a red flag infront of a bull as I will go and do it just to prove that I am strong enough and can do it (despite the fact that it – sometimes – actually very heavy).

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