Accepting Failure – 5 reasons why failing forward is a struggle.

In the course of developing this content, my thought process was in a state of reflective overdrive. I spent a lot of waking moments reviewing my emotions, thoughts and aftermath reactions from things I have failed in and things I have also seen as being a failure.

Part of what I also reflected on was the underlining difference between rejection and failure; I needed to be as sure as possible that I understood the difference and most importantly, know when either term is applicable.

I share on rejection in a previous post in such a way that it is applicable to any are of life and in getting my thoughts aligned to write this post, the thought did cross my mind again- Is there a difference between failure and rejection?

The millennium mantra has helped in re-strategizing thinking around failure to be a positive one and celebrates failing as a means to a very quick learning process. In “Failing forward”, I find that no one can immediately avoid the initial impact or feelings that rush through you as a result of failing or being a failure but you can find a learning curve from it.

This brings me to my terms – using the word ‘Failure” versus using the word” Failing” – it is important to know when to use them in my opinion.

Failure is an unsuccessful event. It is an unexpected end of a process. It is not achieving and getting what you figured you need to have at certain points in time.

Most recently, I began to define it as “a disruptive way, forcing you to deal with a situation, with a different perspective”

Failing is the new cool, the new experience that is used to review how ready one is especially in businesses and career. Questions are adapted and analysed to check a person’s ability to rise up from failing and failure and it is a required prerequisite in some climes. So, why do some still struggle with the acceptance of failure?

Here are some reasons

Failure as an identity

The emotional crash that happens is not easy especially when it feels like a series of events have happened to make one feel like a failure. We now take on the perception and begin to struggle with our identity, making it look like if one fails consistently, then, failure is an innate gene. No! This is not and should never be. Your identity is not as a result of your circumstances, situation, issues or problems. These events are fluid; they come and go. Your identity is (and should be) unshakeable -who you are, why you are here, what you go through. Separate failure from your identity.

No reflection after a failing

 I totally agree with the idea that you alone owe yourself the truth, so tell yourself the truth. I used to struggle with the reality of my failures and rejections. It is always nicer to ‘lace’ it up so that you can feel better but will it benefit you in the long run?

Think reflectively. Analyse and try and be realistic about the reasons why this event occurred. Your future self will thank you for it.

Throwing a pity party

Although I never had the time to do this, I must admit that it is tempting to wallow in sorrows and the accompanying feelings they bring. By all means, please, cry. Cry it out, feel bad and upset about that event and I repeat, that particular event. Then get over it and try to review it. Pity parties are a very sorry way to get attention to yourself, give the situation or event too much accolades and unnecessary focus. So, cry and be sad BUT have it at the back of your mind that you need to get over yourself.

Circle of influence

This is a very critical reason why some failing event become transitioned into a failure mindset. No man or woman is an island, who are you sharing this failing event with? Who are you talking to about it? Is the person a ‘safe space’ for you to be real and truthful? Is the circle that of like minded vision of purpose and destiny or are they a circle of competition and comparison?

Check your circle and avoid wrecking yourself for the long haul.

Failing is an event

A lot of us can have feelings of depression when we fail at something. This can linger on. What makes us unable to accept it is thinking that this is who we are and we compare to someone else’s ‘less failing life’. But rather than actually think all this thoughts (which is normal), get along with it by checking and asking, ‘what does failing this mean’?

Habits are developed over time. Like our muscles while exercising, our failure mindsets can change patterns when we focus on learning points and outcomes of a failing event. When an unpleasant event happens, you can choose to learn, grow and develop from it. That habit and principle can begin to develop and applied to other scenarios if need be.

It is possible to accept the failing event and not accept that you are a failure. Failure is a very huge opportunity to change directions and keep at the game. This concept should be applied according to situation and events and should be reviewed as you go along in achieving purpose – career, family, businesses, relationships, spirituality, humanity and nation building

“Failure sucks. So set yourself up for little successes. But do it in a balanced way. You don’t want to fool yourself. “- Greg Kotzbauer


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