When Lisa and Becky slightly clashed into each other at the reception door around 8:30, they shared a knowing look. They often met there; the only thing they had in common. They never really spoke about anything else other than work stuff. In the Communications Company, Lisa was a Computer Specialist whereas Becky was a Researcher.
In the building they ran and found the one of receptionists rummaging through a mess of papers on her counter. Some of them had fallen on the tiled floor. The women noticed dots of sweat on her forehead. With questioning expressions on their faces, they called “Good Morning, Nadia,” as they run past. Up in the control room, people were running around, others shouting over on the telephone receivers, others typing so fast with their eyes glued on the screen; papers were flying everywhere.
“What is going on?” wondered Becky out loud when they entered.
Marcel who was closest to her said, “The Management is firing people! They are cutting people left and right.”
Lisa’s heart skipped a bit, Becky’s heart started pounding. They both knew there was no way they won’t be on the list.
The process of failure begins when an action or behaviour that creates the odds of the factual failure occurs. These happenings can either be avoided or not.
Lisa hurried fast to her desk, opened the computer, started scribbling down bullshit, and then typed nonsense. Her heart was pounding so hard, her fingers slightly trembling. She held her hands to calm herself down and then prayed a short prayer.
“Please God, help me! Please, don’t let me be on that list! I beg of you.” The words run in her head over, and over and over.
Becky run to her desk and started pretending to be busy. The voices in her head were screaming, “Oh my Goooood! What are you going to do? Where are you going to go? You are such an idiot? Why can’t you wake up at 5 in the morning like a normal person?” Then another voice inside her head moaned, “Oh my God! I am doomed! My kids are doomed!”
At 9 o’clock, the manager entered the room and declared that four employees were getting cut for low performance and/or incompetence as they violated the contracts they signed. Names were read; Lisa held her hands over her chest and closed her eyes briefly while Becky was halfway through in making peace with getting fired.
After the subject has looked failure right in the face, there is either mourning or denial of the part played by the subject in making failure happen. When the individual mourns, there are regrets crawling up their visors about things that they could have done to avoid failure and sometimes there is nothing that they could possibly have done. When mourning period is over, they embrace failure; hug it like a ‘comfy old sweater.’ However when a victim denies failure, they think that it should never have happened because they have either done everything right or because they are too proud to admit, even to themselves, that they are to blame for being hit flat in the face. These people, they turn their backs on failure, slam the door and storm out. These are mostly people had a lot to do with failure occurrence.
Three months later, Becky and Lisa met at a Bank and hugged like old friends. Down bank benches they sat.
“Wow! You look amazing! And happy!” exclaimed Lisa.
Becky blushed a bit and said, “Thank you, Hon! No one’s told me that in so many years now!”
“I wonder what’s making you happy these days! Papa Leila treating you like a queen?” she teased.
“Oh! He’s great, but let’s not get crazy, ha-ha!”
“So, what’s been going on?” she continued before Becky replied, “To be honest, being a housewife look great on you! Remember how you used to work, have a husband and take care of three kids. Seriously, I have to ask, why couldn’t you just hire a housemaid?"
Becky grinned, “I don’t work well with housemaids. I am not a housewife now though. I got my old job back at the Company!”
“Oh my God! Is that real? How is that possible?”
“Well, when I got fired, I started looking for a job and luckily found an opening in as a PR consultant. The job allowed me to work from home. As I thought about taking the job, I realised that I could also have worked from home at the Company. Nothing in the contract said that I had to be at the office. So, I went to ask for my job back. I had to beg though; the HR is tough.”
“Yeah, she was a bitch!”
“So, what do you do these days.”
“Well, nothing for now except the kids. However, I’ll be good soon. My husband is opening me a clothing store.
This process ends with post-failure decisions and their of those decisions. Hugging failure like a comfy old sweater does not imply being a loser and being proud of being a loser. Instead, you wear a comfy sweater because there is coldness and chill inside you that you need to drive out. The sweater is old because there are qualities that put you in a position that you failed at. You don’t simply wake up and find yourself there. The sweater might even be something as small as the guts to apply for a job or an exam. When you treat failure right, it helps you to change what is going wrong in your life. Failure becomes a ladder to success, paradise or close to heaven in different aspects of life.
Another post-failure action after you have stormed out and you have completely refused to look back at your possible contribution in what happened, or what you could do to get out of this funk, then, there is no other way to go but down, especially, if you are not a lucky person, who have families and connections who can pick you up. As failure is a ladder to great heights, it is also a slippery road down to destruction.