Failure is one of those things we all have in common – like putting our pants on one leg at a time. It’s a human experience. Some people handle the experience well, others not so well. What’s the trick? How do some people bounce back so successfully after failure?
#1 They don’t take the failure personally. Failure isn’t a personal attack or a sign of any type of character flaw. There is a cliché that says something along the lines of “failure means you tried.” People that are actively pursuing goals and dreams fail often and they perceive it as part of the process. Instead of feeling unworthy or like a failure, they reevaluate their strategy and try again.
The next time you experience failure instead of feeling badly about yourself, feel good about the fact that you tried, and try again.
#2 They use the experience as a learning tool. Failure happens, right? Why not learn from the experience. Analyze what went wrong and why? What can you change or do differently next time? How can you use your failure to succeed?
#3 Sometimes we fail for a reason. Maybe our heart really wasn’t into the effort. Maybe a limiting belief prevented us from achieving success. And sometimes it wasn’t the right opportunity. Generally when we fail there is a reason. Look around and evaluate why. Look for new opportunities and experiences that may bring success.
#4 Be grateful for the experience. Gratitude is a powerful emotion. Feeling gratitude for the failure and the experience will help you move forward with resolve and enthusiasm. Sometimes writing or journaling your thoughts in a positive manner helps you embrace failure as a positive experience rather than a negative one.
#5 Realize it happens to everyone and don’t hesitate to ask for help or advice. One of the great things about failure is it is an equalizer. Know that the most powerful people in the world, the most famous people have all failed thousands of times. When you fail instead of internalizing it and struggling again and again, ask for help and advice.
#6 Embrace your inner child. Remember being a kid and running with your friend? Sometimes you’d fall right? What would you do? You’d jump back up, not even really think about the fall and return to running, right? Children have a knack for focusing on the fun and not letting the failures or falls stop them. Do as the song says, “pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and start all over again.” If you love what you’re doing, you won’t even give a failure a second thought.
#7 Laugh. We all make mistakes and those who can laugh at themselves and their mistakes get over them much faster than those who cannot.
Failure is a part of life. Embrace it as openly as you do success. Enjoy it, learn from it, and welcome it as a lesson and an opportunity to reach greater success.