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IIT Memories (Part 2/5): Theme 1 – Overcome Fear of Failure

March 17th, 2009 · 19 Comments

All it takes is one Test at IIT to bring us all down to Earth and accept failure as part of life. I still remember getting 3/20 in my first Physics Test. Having been used to topping all through school and college, this was a rude shock. But not the end of life. After my first semester in IIT where I focused only on academics, I realised that I had little hope of emerging as a topper even with my best efforts. And so it was that I started focusing on extra-curricular activities, and in three years rose to the top student post (General Secretary – Cultural). If we fail in something, perhaps there is something else we can succeed at.

This learning has been true through my life. In business, I have tried multiple things and only a few have worked. Failure has been the teacher for me. If we can overcome our fear of failure, there is much that we can do in life that we like and can excel at.

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19 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Piyush // Mar 17, 2009 at 6:54 am

    Oh those great IIT days! They used to the same things back then too 🙂 (my 3/20s and subsequent foray into ex-co being a rather recent phenomenon )
    I miss them so much

  • 2 ashish // Mar 17, 2009 at 8:16 am

    And I got 3/40 in ED (Engg. drawing!!) – used to be the ‘typical class topper etc…till 12th.

    Beauty of such institutes is that they just show you the real ‘you’ – the true picture..kind of gives an opportunity to ‘reclaim’ life/repaint the canvas!

  • 3 Akshar // Mar 17, 2009 at 10:56 am

    Keep going Rajesh!

  • 4 kasi // Mar 17, 2009 at 4:21 pm

    That is so true Rajesh about fear of failure.

    But… sometimes the failure hurts like hell 🙂

  • 5 Alok Mittal // Mar 19, 2009 at 5:02 pm

    you are so right Rajesh! it takes one of those sadist profs to flush out the steam 🙂

  • 6 Mainak // Mar 20, 2009 at 7:23 pm

    I don’t think you need to get 3/20 to overcome the fear of failure. In fact, having failed once might seed doubts in your mind about your own abilities. What one needs to overcome the fear of failure is an unfailing belief in one’s abilities & talents as an individual – I don’t see an IITian getting 3/20 to overcome the fear of failure

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