Went to a local tournament yesterday to watch my friends fence. (Almost said team instead of friends. When I start entering competitions along with them, I’ll consider thinking of myself as their teammate.) A few of them were guys who are clearly ahead of me, judging by the results of our practice bouts — and those guys were gone fairly quickly. Watching them fall so easily, I was convinced that had I entered the tournament (as I had thought I might until last week), I most likely have lost every bout, and scored few if any touches.
You learn from failure, of that there is no doubt. But it does not follow that the more one fails, or the more spectacularly one fails, the more one learns. Some time in the near future, I will enter competitions like the one I saw yesterday, and I’m certain to have little success. I just want to develop my skills to the point where I can actually learn something from being squashed.