It’s fine to celebrate success but it is more important to heed the lessons of failure. ~ Bill Gates
There’s no arguing that succeeding is wonderful and failing sucks. When we fail, it’s easy to fall prey to self-doubt and fear. Who likes to admit that things didn’t work out well?
Even if it hurts, failure isn’t a bad thing. It has a lot of advantages that we tend to neglect when we are disappointed in ourselves. If you can learn to embrace failure and not letting yourself being dragged down by negative thoughts, you are well underway to living a fearless life.
1) You Have Tried
You didn’t give up! How many people do you know who haven’t even tried? It’s always easy to look down on others because they’ve failed. But it takes courage to be willing to take risks and expose yourself to new situations; failure included. So instead of feeling embarrassed that you didn’t succeed be proud to be among the daring few. You could’ve refused or eluded, but you didn’t.
Even if you feel horrible, you faced what made you uncomfortable or what you didn’t feel ready for yet. That’s ok. Just don’t make the mistake to beat yourself up for it. We all fail; we all make mistakes. That’s an essential part of our life.
Everyone has flaws. They are part of what makes us unique. So think about it: Do you prefer saying “I’m the one who didn’t try”, or “I’m the one who tried. It didn’t go as well as expected, but now I know how it’s done.”
2) You Have Learned Something
With every failure, you learn more than when attaining a good outcome. Succeeding is reaping the fruits of failure. Why? When you fail, you learn so much about yourself and your abilities. No one is born an expert. We all are beginners at some point; we all have to learn. When we fail, it’s just a sign that we haven’t learnt enough yet. That’s it. So you can go back to where you’ve started from, and make it better.
To know our weaknesses is part of our strength. Fearless people know exactly what their weaknesses are and how to handle them. They have brought to perfection overcoming their fears and doubts. That’s what makes learning from failure so precious.
So next time you fail don’t be mad at yourself. We are all lifelong students, and failures are our lessons on our way to the person we want to be and the life we want to live.
3) You Have Grown as a Person
Failure makes us question our ways, sometimes even the person that we are. Although setbacks are hard to digest, they can be very cathartic and humbling. We need these experiences in order to grow both personally and professionally. They have more influence on our personality than instant success.
The learnings are what counts in the end and not if you have mastered a challenging situation perfectly. This will come with time. However, there will always be moments that cannot be predicted.
Do everything that lies ahead as good as you can. Always try your best even if this might not be enough. Challenge yourself as much as possible. Coming to our limits means to learn when it’s necessary to push our boundaries even more. Remember: The greatest gifts in life come wrapped up in problems.
4) You Have Something to Tell
Think about it: The greatest stories told are not the ones where the hero walks through life without having to face any obstacles along the way. He has to fail a lot to get to where he wants to. A good story describes how his character transforms with each failure; that’s what we want to know. This is what makes his personality interesting and us wanting to know more about him.
In hindsight, our failures don’t make us seem weak but to the contrary. They make us strong and complete. Others can learn from your experience. No matter if you give advice to a colleague, your friends, your partner, your kids or grandchildren, you are the living proof that failure didn’t get you down but made you the wonderful person that you are.
5) Eventually, You Will Succeed
Failing is the stepping stone to success. Rome wasn’t built in a day either. The more often you fail, the better you get at it. As human beings, we are trained to adapt, and this is what makes failure less intimidating in time. It won’t go under your skin anymore and let you doubt yourself.
Failing is a necessary learning process to overcome your self-imposed limitations. And you’re not only going to get better at failing but at understanding why. You’ll learn to trust yourself and know when to get help. When you embrace failure, success will follow.
Take a look at this video to learn how many times the most successful people had to try to finally get where they are now. Next time you fail, don’t shy away from giving yourself another chance. Fear of failure is worse than failure itself. Fear prevents you from trying. Failure prevents you from making the same mistake again.
How do you handle failure? What’s your motivation to try again? Please share your experience in the comment box below.