Do you remember when the space shuttle Columbia burned up on reentry? The saddest aspect of that story is that the shuttle team had observed insulation ripping off the hull many times before. But it had never caused a problem so the team allowed it to continue until…disaster.
“Success” and “failure” are approximate terms. The words express a binary outcome, but they are inadequate to describe reality. Because in the real world many of our successes are actually near misses, where the only thing between you and utter disaster is a bit of luck.
Does that mean you shouldn’t congratulate yourself for your successes? Not at all. Give yourself a high five and acknowledge yourself. But when the afterglow fades, review your performance with a detached and clinical eye. Is there a hole in your game that your competitors will exploit? How much did dumb luck come into play? Did you win clean or was it a near miss?
Complacency is the eternal enemy. If you allow yourself to repeat wrong, to squeak by with near misses, eventually your bill will come due. It’s only a matter of time.
So fly high, as high as you can go, but check yourself continually. Don’t burn up on reentry.