Don’t be afraid of failure.
“I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” — Michael Jordan
Failure: the omission of expected or required success, the lack of success, the action of not functioning.
The idea of failure largely determines how we interpret events in our lives. The tests we take in schools, the relationships in our lives, or the things we compete in. The world knows there are only a few winners in most areas; someone always has a better score, better grade, or more stuff. This puts people at different levels in their own mind. People inherently compare themselves to others, that’s the best reference for what we are striving for what we want. If we don’t compare to others that are striving for the same things, we often look at that as failure. When we fail, we want to quit and try something else. I want to explore why failure isn’t a bad thing. In fact, it might be the most important aspect to your eventual success.
When someone goes to take a test or compete, they take time to prepare, study, and strategize. If that person fails, or loses to their opponent, that is because they did not execute their skills correctly or weren’t sufficiently prepared. Many people will interpret defeat as a negative feeling and get anxious after a poor event occurs. However, if a person were to reflect on the event after the fact and build on their weak areas, they didn’t fail; they learned.
Many successful people in various aspects of life are not afraid of failure; they embrace the experience as a way to improve themselves. Their goals align with something that is in the big picture, like winning a championship or getting a degree. A single failed test or a poor competition does not determine the outcome of that big picture. The important aspect to look at is not getting caught up in a negative event. So, here are a few tips to help you get your mind around accepting failure as a positive experience.
- It is Okay to Fail but it’s not Okay to Give Up.
In your mind, if you remain persistent and continue to strive to your goal, you will be successful. Failing once, twice, or a hundred times only gives you more ideas in how to improve yourself. If you give up, that is the only true failure that you will experience.
- Revisit your goals.
- Learn from your mistakes
- Understand it’s importance
It is necessary to understand the value of what failure brings to the table. Look back on past failures and think about what aspect or lesson impacted you; would you knowing that lesson beforehand mean as much if you didn’t have that experience? Do you think you could have prevented it?
If you failed to meet a goal, look at the objective and ask yourself these questions. Is this the right goal? Did I word this correctly? Can I visualize achieving this goal? If you doubt yourself, rewrite your goals to align with how you feel.
Realize your mistakes and work on improving yourself to limit those mistakes.
Failure is a requirement for success. The more opportunities that you put yourself in, the more lessons you will learn. If you fail, take the opportunity to know what you need to do to improve. Then, try again.
“Failure is the opportunity to begin again more intelligently”- Henry Ford