"While the formula for success varies from person to person and situation to situation, the formula for failure remains constant. Those that never do always fail. Those who try to please everyone all the time, often finish up pleasing nobody. Why, even the most selfish person in the world is guaranteed to please one person at least all the time; himself!
There is no point trying to resist gravity when falling from on high. Far better to prepare for the landing and cushion it if possible. The best way however to avoid failure is to never anticipate it. Other ways include learning to perceive the outcome more positively and if necessary, as the late Scottish psychiatrist R.D. Laing advocated, learning to 're-frame' it.
R.D.Laing was the type of man I truly admired. He wrote extensively on mental illness, and in particular, the experience of psychosis. His existential philosophy ran counter to the psychiatric orthodoxy of the day by taking the expressed feelings of the individual patient or client as valid descriptions of lived experience rather than simply as symptoms of some separate or underlying disorder.
Although an alcoholic in his later years, his thought remained fresh until the day he died. He accepted we all experience neurosis and therefore advocated getting rid of one neurosis which hampered one's life by substituting it with one of lesser ill. If the delusional patient believed themselves to be the reincarnation of Henry 1V, then he would address them as though they were Henry 1V. If a person who was mentally ill, insisted that he first interview their imaginary friend who was reportedly sitting in the room with them, he would oblige. When one woman described her problem as remaining awake all night long when the rest of the city was fast asleep he replied, 'How marvellous. What an opportunity to get all those things done at night that the busy day and the interference of others will not allow you to do!'
I did not agree with all his announcements however, particularly those of the more amoral type. He seemed wholly able to tolerate and accept anyone else's problem in life that did not directly impact upon his own life and circumstances. He once argued on late-night television that the act of bestiality with pig did not disturb him in the slightest, so long as it wasn't his porky getting stuffed." William Forde: May 28th, 2013.