We have all experienced failure at some point or another: failure to get the job, failure in a relationship, failure to make the team or to pass the test. But I have learned something pretty amazing: failure is the key to success.
And if you can recognize the positive impact of failure on your character and attitude, you can use this to leverage your career and life goals.
So here are 8 reasons failure is the key to success:
1) Failure defines your character.
“Adversity is the state in which man most easily becomes acquainted with himself.” – John Wooden.
There is nothing that packs a punch quite like failure. It can damage your confidence, fill you with self-doubt and dent your ego faster than you can say, “what the f-” …IF you let it.
Changing your emotional reaction to failure takes time and practice. But, in return, you will become stronger, more resilient and less likely to crumble in difficult situations.
It is only when you are faced with adversity that your character is truly tested. Can you hold your position and not lose face when you come up against extreme challenges? Do you have the ability to lead your team through crisis?
Failure toughens you up and equips you with a strong heart. It is the chest-press for reliance — the more reps, the stronger you become.
2) Failure makes you forge your own path.
“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson.
We’ve all heard of the saying: “When you can’t get in the front door, try the back door, if the back door is shut, look for a window.” But my question is: what if no one is letting you in the gawd-damn building?
Have you ever been in the position where you feel like no one is giving you a break?
If this is your situation, instead of waiting around, start building your own castle. Use this opportunity to equip yourself with more knowledge, sharpen your skills and forge new ones. While you are creating your own pathway in life, you will be amazed by the opportunities that come your way and the doors that will lead you beyond your expectations.
3) Failure forces you to up your game.
“The season of failure is the best time to sow the seeds of success.” – Paramahansa Yogananda.
When faced with failure, forget the pity party and put your energy into asking the right questions… What could I have done better? How can I improve? What did he/she know that I didn’t? What can I learn from this?
Use failure to make a self-assessment. Identify your strengths and weaknesses. Let failure be the fuel that drives you to the next level.
4) Failure gives you the opportunity to develop your talent.
“I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” – Michael Jordan
Use failure to sharpen and hone in your talents. See failure as the dress-rehearsal, the practice run, the training ground for greater things to come.
5) Failure helps you discover what you really want.
“Failure is the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.” – Henry Ford.
When you experience failure, you may often find yourself asking: what’s the point?
This is a very good question. You need to know what drives you. What is your objective? Happiness? Health? Financial security? Creative fulfillment? To be the best tiramisu chef in the world?
When you have a clear goal, it’s much easier to take the necessary steps to help you reach it.
6) Failure opens your creativity.
“If you’re not failing every now and then, it’s a sign you’re not doing anything very innovative.” Woody Allen.
Whether you are a musician, physicist, painter or entrepreneur, failure can inspire creativity and can lead you above and beyond your dreams. Use failure as fuel for innovation, to build new strategies, to think outside the box and to use the resources at hand.
J.K Rowling, Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein and Joni Mitchell all used failure to fuel their creativity in some shape or form, this has led them to great success.
7) Failure teaches you who your real friends are.
“Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down.” – Oprah Winfrey
Everyone wants to be around successful people. But when everything is going downhill, you really learn who your true friends are. Those who are honest, loyal and stand by you despite your failures are the people you know you can trust when you reach the top.
8) Failure teaches you the meaning of success.
To live a life of passion, happiness, fortune, fulfillment and love, we must all experience the bitter taste of failure.
“It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well have not lived at all, in which case you have failed by default.” – JK Rowling.
The trick is not to avoid failure because you are afraid of what people will say, but instead to allow failure to help you to navigate towards your goals and dreams.
Experiencing failure does not mean you ARE a failure. Oh no! Failure is not the end result, but instead, the pathway to success. So unlock your potential baby. The keys are in your hands.