Sandra Bullock’s Inspiring Take On Failure

I fell asleep before the Oscars were over last night, so thank goodness for YouTube! Sandra Bullock deserves raves for her moving and funny best actress speech – in which she recognized her fellow nominees, the sacrifices of mothers everywhere, and her own mom Helga, a German opera singer who died ten years ago. (I feel so much better about nagging my kids to practice piano.)

But what inspired me most about Bullock was the fact that she showed up in person at the Razzie Awards last weekend to accept her Worst Actress Golden Raspberry trophy for her role in "All About Steve." She arrived pulling a cart full of DVDs for the Razzie Foundation members, and said: "I will show up next year if you promise to watch the movie, and really consider whether it was really and truly the worst performance." She pledged to return her trophy if that was the case.

I love the implication of that move. Because everyone (except maybe Meryl Streep) has moments in their careers where they put out terrific work, and others where they produce not-so-terrific work. Typically the crappy stuff happens early on and is buried in the archives by the time the person steps up to the microphone, dignified and serious, to accept their Oscar, Emmy, Pulitzer, Nobel, what have you.

That Bullock embraced all of her work and had such a sense of humor about it is truly classy. Mistakes, failures and flops – in work, in parenting, in life — are part of the journey. She reminded everyone not to get sidelined by a Razzie, because an Oscar-winning performance may lie ahead – and whatever happens, keep it light, keep taking risks, and keep having fun. (And always remember to thank your mom in your acceptance speech.)

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