failing

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So many clichés focused around failing easily roll off the tongue to make someone feel better and potentially encourage them to try again, but are we really listening to what they mean?

 

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.

The only time you really fail is when you stop trying.

 

At some point, someone is going to find themselves swimming in a rubble heap of failure. Their reaction to this defeat is what proves whether their defeat is really a defeat at all. If after everything falls away around you, you find one good thing from the failure, you have built on something that was previously not there before. Being able to find positive in all the negative things depends on perspective.

 

Some successful products were built on the heels of failed products in a different industry. Both Slinky and Silly Putty were designs to be used in the military, but failed. Had the inventor thrown this idea away, children all over the world would never have had these toys. Changing their perspective of what these inventions were to accomplish is what made them a success from a different perspective. The ability to change this perspective hinges on the reaction to the failure.

 

Consider your own reaction when something fails or doesn’t go your way. Do you react out of anger or depression? Do you scream and yell or do you stay centered and calm? Initial reactions are one thing, however the key is to not let them frame your end result. Take a step back and analyze why you felt this was such a failure. Don’t focus so much on trying to not fail again, but find how you can reframe your thinking to take the positive and change your perspective on the failure. Sometimes it is starting from scratch again, while other times it is realizing the failure actually took you to a place of success in another viewpoint.

 

So the next time you are in a place of frustration and anger about failing, ask yourself if it really is a failure to begin with and what you can do to positively channel the emotions to begin to change the perspective in the end.

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