Book Review: The Innovation Paradox

The Success of Failure, The Failure of Success Just a quick book review...or recommendation really since I haven't read the whole book yet. We were assigned a few of the chapters for my Senior Seminar class. I thought it merited a blog update because it highlights many issues that I've been facing myself in my creative work. Without going into too much detail, the best take away that I got from this book was the idea of "Productive Mistake Making". Personally, I have trouble starting anything in fear that I might fail. I have to stop looking at failure as an end-all embarrassment fiasco and more like experiments in which I learn what works and what doesn't. Something that I believe sites like Facebook and Twitter are contributing to is this feeling of our own importance, that people are constantly watching our every...EVERY move and are just waiting to see us fail miserably. In all's probable that no one actually cares enough to do anything more than giggle a bit and they're ready to move on with their lives.

Mistakes often lead to new paths, new ways of thinking that we might not have come up with on our own had we not "failed" to accomplish what we were hoping for. Evolution itself is a key example of "failures" turning into huge successes. If mutations never occurred, species would find it impossible to adapt to environmental changes.

Ultimately, surviving embarrassment is a liberating experience and it gets easier with practice. I know when I'm getting ready to do some class presentation or other forms of public speaking I freak out and get super nervous, but afterward I feel amazing and wonder what I was so afraid of. It just takes practice (and realizing that most students are too busy worrying about their own presentations to be worried about yours). Anyway, good book, I highly recommend it if you're looking for something to break you out of a failure-phobia. Quite Eye-opening and has countless examples of where failure turned out to be a good thing.