Every now and then, I’ll be cruising along feeling on top of my game, and out of nowhere I’ll get a pie in the face. Humble pie. Something will happen to remind me I’m not all that.

  • Someone else did it first.
  • Someone else did it faster.
  • I can’t control all the variables.
  • It didn’t turn out the way I wanted.
  • I ran out of time.
  • I didn’t make the team.

Whatever it is, there’s always something to remind me not to let my ego get in the way of my progress, that there’s still a lot left for me to learn.

The key in these situations is not to knuckle under and stop trying. In fact, it’s just the opposite. If someone did it first, what can I learn from that to make it better? If someone else did it faster, how can I improve my time–or make it worth the wait? If I can’t control the variables, how can I create a plan that accounts for deviation? If it didn’t turn out the way I wanted, should I reevaluate my expectations or try again?

Though best eaten with crow, humble pie can be nourishing with the right attitude.

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