Failure. Let’s talk about it. We live in a society where getting it wrong just doesn’t feel like an option. We are constantly bombarded on social media about other people’s successes and assume our lives have to be win after win. We can be scrolling through Instagram and see an old school friend living a #blessed life and this pang of frustration hits us and we think, ‘why haven’t I achieved that yet? – I’m such a failure!’
Life can often feel as though you are juggling so many things at once that as soon as one thing goes wrong, everything comes tumbling to the ground. Whether it’s not getting that job, or perhaps you’ve let someone down you really care about, you didn’t get the grades you wanted or you just simply feel as though everything is going wrong, failure can make us feel really crappy. It can lead to a whole string of intrusive thoughts making you feel depressed or anxious and mainly scared to repeat the experience or attempt something new.
From a young age, school have labelled us pass or fail. It’s time to shake that off and start embracing the positives of failing. We need to learn to fail forward, here’s how:
1) Failure is Necessary
Unless you are someone extremely lucky, you will never succeed on the first try. Beginners luck only applies in monopoly. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication to get things right. Do you think Simone Biles just backflipped out of the womb? No! She trained really hard for it day in and day out, and I’m sure she fell a lot of times along the way. Failure is a part of succeeding – it’s sometimes the first, second or even three hundredth failure that leads to success, so just keep going!
2) You learn more from failure than you ever do success
Think of failure as a troubleshooting exercise, you can iron out all of the kinks before getting it right. Let’s be honest, we learn nothing new from success, but from failure, we learn what not to do and how to pick ourselves up and carry on.
3) It’s all relative
What you may consider a really bad disappointment other folks may just be blown away by the fact you gave it a try. We all have different strengths and weaknesses so try to never compare or match yourself up to others, because we are all succeeding in our own way.
4) There are some problems that can’t be solved
This is just the way it is, sometimes it’s either not the right time or not the avenue to take. It’s okay when you fail to change directions and try something new. There is no shame in admitting that something wasn’t for you. You only know you don’t like something when you try it. So well done for trying, now, hang up those tap shoes and move on to the next thing.
5) Failure gives you the proper perspective on success
Without epically failing from time to time how are we supposed to recognise what success looks like? Next time something doesn’t go the way you’d hoped, take it as a reminder of how great you’ll feel next time you succeed. We wouldn’t be able to appreciate our successes without learning from our failures!
6) You are not alone.
Failure happens to everyone, that’s right… everyone. Work with failure not against it as it’s trying to teach you something. Regret is so much worse than failure. So don’t regret what you were scared to try, the worst thing that can happen is that you fail, and you have so much to gain from that.