Steve Jobs wrote a book, "The Journey is the Reward", and I believe that principle applies perfectly to this thread. Most people pursue a goal because the actual pursuit
of the goal is enjoyable, fulfilling and rewarding. The rebuilding of a vessel is often a labor of love, not necessarily a critical step towards a specific goal. The reward in the boat rebuilding is the satisfaction with the repaired woodwork/engine/whatever, the sense of accomplishment, and sense of self-worth that comes with most success. To apply the term "failure" to the pursuit of cruising is somewhat inappropriate, in my opinion.
In my mind, "cruising" is the enjoyment of being at sea or visiting multiple ports
, wandering as one's spirit, weather
, and personal circumstances dictate. The "point" of cruising is not to arrive at a destination
, but to enjoy the trip. Just like life.
I would guess few cruisers who are feeling fulfilled and satisfied WHILE cruising "fail" due to other circumstances. Most find (just in my opinion) that some aspect of the experience is not what they had anticipated, find the negative aspects of their cruising experience to outweigh the attractive aspects that they had looked forward to, and change their mind. To call that a "failure" is to misstate the entire purpose of the experience.
I've found myself totally comfortable working on my boat, and becoming concerned that my "projects" were going to supersede the intent of having the boat in the first place. So that would bring up the question "what would be the problem if it did?". If the pursuit
of a dream, or the preparation for that pursuit, is a satisfying, enjoyable and fulfilling experience, why stop? If the actual "cruising" that would result from completion of the project
is not all that one expected it to be, then it could be said that by finishing the "pursuit" and cruising, the person "failed".
The biggest failure is not trying, and the second biggest failure is continuing despite the realization that the experience was not what you wanted, and not valuing the quality of your life enough to admit the new reality and stop.