Most people, at some point in their lives, will experience at least a moment of solemn anguish over something they did, something they didn't do, something they wish they had known about sooner, and so forth. It's a quirk of human nature to reflect, from time to time, on unfortunate outcomes or missed opportunities. Animals can learn from something that causes harm or distress. But they don't generally seem to have the capacity for it to occupy their thoughts and drag them down into a depressive funk.
At the end of March, right around the time that the first eager fans were lining up to see the blockbuster movie Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice, photos and video from a promotional interview with the film's stars, Henry Cavill and Ben Affleck, began to circulate online. Cavill is seen answering a question about negative reviews of the film, while, at his side, Affleck sits quietly and seems mired in a sucking bog of profound regret. The square-jawed matinee idol is bumming so hard he barely seems aware of where he is, or what he is doing.
"Sad Ben Affleck" instantly became fodder for meme generators and Facebook witticisms. A YouTube wag synched up the video with the mournful strains of Simon and Garfunkel's "Sounds of Silence." Almost everyone with a Tumblr or a Twitter feed mockingly offered a penny for Affleck's cheerless thoughts. It was all fairly mean spirited — yet probably also stirred, if the truth were known, by a grain of empathy. Everyone knows that face. Everyone has grappled with a few morose reflections of their own in life.
OK. So what does any of this have to do with certification and IT training? Consider it a word of advice and a note of encouragement. Certification is hard and, for many, involves failure. When that happens, don't let it eat you up inside. An IT professional needs to be resilient in a lot of ways, but one vital life skill to work on is the capacity to shrug at your mistakes, seek out whatever key data was missing in the moment, and move forward. There's no point in stewing about things that you've already done wrong. Done is done.
The next time that you encounter failure, and the way forward seems shrouded in dejection, pick up speed. The faster you move on, the sooner you'll discover your next big success.
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