Last month when I wrote out my list of 2016 goals, I decided I really wanted to try to read one business book a month for the next 12 months. I’ve basically had “read more business books” on my rolling to-do list for a couple of years now and besides listening to a few minutes of a Seth Godin book I got from Audible.com every once in a blue moon, I’ve been majorly slacking. I figured making it a once a month thing would help me get down to business! Pun intended.
This month I bought The Up Side of Down (Why Failing Well is the Key to Success) by Megan McArdle. It’s based on the idea that failure is inevitable, but it’s how you handle it that defines you. I was really interested in the idea of having to learn to fail well in order to succeed! I think failure is one of the things I’m most afraid of (I mean, who isn’t, though?), so I was pretty eager to learn how to handle these moments a little more easily and also become better because of them.
I’m not going to lie. I had a difficult time getting through this book. I just wasn’t super motivated to get through it. Is that kind of a failure?? I didn’t actually finish it until yesterday…and that was really just because I knew I had to blog about it! Nothing says “get to reading!” like basically having the adult version of a book report due.
My biggest takeaway from the book was that sometimes what we feel are huge failures turn out to set us up for huge successes. Megan talks about how often what people think of as the “worst thing that ever happened” to them sometimes ends up being the best thing. I felt like I could really relate to that on a personal level since some of my past failures led me to starting my business.
In general though, it wasn’t quite my cup of tea. I felt like it was a touch negative in saying that “failure is inevitable”. I personally wanted to hear more anecdotes about how people turned their biggest failures into successes and some of the lessons behind those stories, however, the book felt thick with political and economic jargon to me rather than tangible lessons that I could take and use in my own life and business.
Although I didn’t love it, you might! I’d like to give away my “Business Book Club” book every month, starting with this one! If you’d like to check out this book, leave a comment here and I’ll choose a random winner on 2/18!