Failure is defined as a “lack of success,” but a lot of us tend to turn a single failure into the notion that WE are failures. There’s a clear distinction here that I want you all to know: experiencing a failure DOES NOT make YOU a failure.
That’s why it is ESSENTIAL to learn how to bounce back from a perceived failure to turn it into an experience that made you better.
PERCEIVED FAILURES VS REAL FAILURES
Whenever failure is involved, it’s difficult not to get our emotions involved. We can easily create a mountain out of a molehill and use failures as a reflection on ourselves.
That’s why I want to introduce you to a new term: perceived failures. Perceived failures are “False alarms that feel like failure but have no serious or lasting consequences on our lives.” When we mix up real failure, perceived failures, and being a failure, it’s a recipe for setbacks. Of course, setbacks are nothing that you can’t get past but the feelings that stem from this certainly can.
Have you ever made a mistake and then developed anxiety about:
- Why you made the mistake
- What other people think of you now
- If you’re going to get fired (we’ve all been there)
- If you really are qualified for your job
The thing is that everyone interprets failures differently. We each react uniquely, but working with my clients has shown me that there are common themes linked to our feelings of failure.
So, I’ve developed a 3-step system that will help you brush off this feeling swiftly and keep going through your goals.
THREE STEPS TO MANAGE THE FEELINGS OF FAILURE:
- Adopt the mindset that everything in life is an experiment. You learn from everything, so everything helps you grow. In other words, expect to fail, especially if you are trying to live your best life. Extraordinary people are continuously pushing themselves outside of their comfort zone and take risks to reach their goals. When you set the mindset that failure is apart of the process, then you are able to see failures are growing experiences rather than negativity. To work on making this happen, focus on:
- What did you learn from the experience?
- What will you do differently to get different results?
- What will you do to never get to this failure level again?
- Widen your perspective and take stock of your career so far. Often, when I speak to clients who have struggled with a job loss or a missed opportunity, I notice that they isolate the issue. Suddenly, it’s the biggest and WORST thing to have happened. And it totally makes them neglect everything good that has happened so far. If this is you, I would recommend you do this exercise: Take out a pen and paper and write down EVERYTHING you’ve accomplished in your entire life. This includes: Skills, certifications, accomplished goals, etc. Look at it every morning. This will allow you to REMEMBER all of the hard work, blood, sweat, and tears it took for you to get here. Don’t take one isolated situation and turn it into a lifetime of failures. It’s not worth it.
- Keep going and celebrate along the way. Persistence & the willingness to try something new is SUCCESS in itself. Make sure to celebrate not only your successes, but also your failures. The fact that you are still with me reading this blog means that you are WILLING to do the hard stuff to reach your highest potential. I believe in you.