How failure can teach us to reassess and make more success in the future
If you are familiar with reading our personal growth content so far you may be more familiar with the concept of seeing value in your failures. We have spoken about this previously quite extensively…and it is for very good reason.
But lets be honest the truth is I certainly don’t want to fail and no doubt in the back of your mind, you don’t want to either.
I hate it when I don’t hit my goals, just like most people and especially students with grand visions for your future life. When I reach a milestone which I have set and I have worked hard to reach it, the feelings it provides me is great. So why the hell would we want to fail? Your time at university or college is quite literally about success. You’re paying upwards of £9,000 a year to obtain the highest possible grade from your chosen area of study!
However, along that journey…failing at something does have its upsides too. It is often in our failures we learn the most lessons. However, to obtain benefit from failures something that you absolutely MUST do when you “fail” is ask yourself…
What went wrong this time?
What didn’t I do enough of, that I can do more of next time?
What do I need to change in the future?
What more can I do next time?
Failure can cause us to stop and reflect and it can cause us to reassess completely. It also brings with it a need to review our performance where sometimes we may forget this essential element of growth!
On the same note some people can see failure as completely damaging. I have certainly been in this position before. Where failure has knocked my confidence.
However, the truth is you can fail over and over and still keep coming back if you are willing to. If you’re willing to keep trying to figure out what went wrong, you can always see value in failure. This is up to you though.
TAKE AWAY: When you come to fail like the above paragraph, always tell yourself “this failure is not permanent…it is a lesson to make me better in the future”
We have also regularly spoken about how so many ‘successful’ people have failed numerous times. Nathan (our other founder) was no stranger to this. He openly admits that he spent his first two years of university constantly failing! But that is also what made him so successful by the end of it.
I feel an important point on failure though, is you must assess it closely to ensure you don’t make the same mistakes over and over.
“The only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing”Henry Ford
Another great mind, Einstein once described insanity as doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. If you are failing something due to a specific action – I.e., partying to much when you should be studying which means you keep failing assignments, do not expect the outcome to be different next time if you do not change this course of action.
If you are failing numerous times at your presentation because you have not developed your presentation skills, then do not expect to pass if you have not worked on them. Instead, ask yourself the questions we listed earlier in this blog and work out what you have to do next time to avoid this failure…and instead make better failures in the future. Better failures being the next “failures” that you will inevitably make…but not the same one as before.
Failing numerous times can allow you to develop your skillset. You become stronger through what you learn and build resilience (resilience is something we will dive into a little more on one of our next blogs).
I recently did something which I had saw as a personal failure. This has meant I have had to go away and reflect. This included listening to new audiobooks, reading up around the subject and developing my skill set further for the future. I have had to assess myself honestly and have since set a new goal and I fully intend to reach it.
The failure in this sense has made me even more determined to reach my goals in the future.
Failure also teaches you to become more mentally resilient. Some people are too scared or fearful to even try things through the fear of failure, however, such attitude holds you back. I have read many articles which claim we should fail often due to both the lessons as well as the mental durability it teaches. It’s a proven fact that if you can accept the inevitability of failure in your studies…you will absolutely reach your full potential.
Whilst I appreciate it isn’t nice to fail, it is always worth mentioning that there is value in failure to. It just depends how you wish to view it.
Your fixed mindset would have you believe you were stuck and unable to change. Your growth mindset would allow you to see its value and its opportunity to develop further.
Which one are you going to choose? Challenge yourself this week to go outside of your comfort zone and embrace “failure”.