How to Be a Dad

How to Be a Dad

How To Fail Beautifully

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I’ve talked a bunch about trying to teach my older son the value of losing and making mistakes. It’s been a battle. I’ve given him lots of examples of how losing or failing can lead to bigger or more sustained success, but he still can’t quite grasp the concept.

Instead, I’m thinking of just showing him this video and explaining to him that you can always fall back on losing gracefully. Some of my favorite characters in books and films had a knack for losing with such charm or grace, that’d end up looking like they won somehow anyway.

This boy exemplifies the way I’d like to lose. If I’m going to go out, it’ll be with a laugh or a smile. Something memorable and under my own volition.

How have you successfully explained the virtues of making mistakes to your kids? Got any ideas?


2 Responses to “How To Fail Beautifully”

  1. Jet says:

    Sometimes asking my kids questions will help them getting out of their frustration and will boost their motivation. Like: why do you want to win? Do you know why you didn’t make it? Do you have an idea what to do about it?

    This way it will become more of a challenge and the fun returns.

    Trying to explain why losing is ok has the same purpose, but somehow kids don’t always keep up with you on this… By asking questions, you don’t have to mention the painful word ‘lose’ 😉

  2. Bryan says:

    My five year old is in full freak out mode right now when it comes to games. Chutes and Ladders turned into Screams and Fistpounds the other day.

    I always remember doing something similar when my older brother beat me when I was a kid. I think Karl’s option might be best – don’t let him win, but make him earn it. But, can my big guy withstand the trials that come with not dominating every game to learn this lesson? Not so sure.

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