At Last! Principle the Ninth

PUT SUCCESS AND FAILURE IN A LARGER CONTEXT.

Or maybe that should read, "Redefine the Terms Success and Failure."

Once when I appeared on a panel, an audience member asked a) how many kids I have and b) how many books I've published. I answered, "I have five kids, and I've published eleven books." And then suddenly THESE surprising words flew out of my mouth: "But I wish I have eleven kids and five books."

Which . . . isn't true. Hello. ELEVEN KIDS? Apparently I just had one of those little mini-strokes you're always reading about. And besides, that's not what I really meant. What I really meant to say is that I have other meaningful things in my life besides a career . . . just like you do. Family. Friends. Hobbies. Cupcakes. Dogs. A church life. Mexican food. Road trips. Satisfying TV shows. Novels. My garden.

Sometimes, though, we start tossing that label FAIL around when we don't achieve what we want to in certain arenas. And we start stretching that label to define everything about us, which is . . . silly. Why devalue the things about our lives that we value?

(BTW m-m-m-m-m. Cupcakes.)