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Failure. Are we all a bunch of hypocrites?

Failure. Are we all a bunch of hypocrites?

Failure is inevitable and is something that is mostly out of our control. After all, who actually sets out to fail? I don't. But it happens, a little more often than I would personally like.

I fail at so many things; staying true to walking my dog each day, keeping 100% of employees engaged all the time, communicating the value proposition of our business when we have severely overserviced a client and it has then become an expectation, keeping a timesheet, and letting go.

My biggest failure 

The latter is possibly my biggest failure. I find it hard to let go even though my head tells me that it is the most sensible thing to do.

I regularly read articles on people who provide aphorisms celebrating their failures, and I often feel that mostly it's just a publicity stunt. As a marketer I know that if I write about failure in a blog, it will get 10 times the number of readers, and be shared more than any other blog that I may write. People love that "shit". They say our best lessons are in the failures we have and mostly that is true, but it doesn't feel great to be constantly whipped with the failure stick.

The truth. The superglue.

If I were to be true, when I fail at something important to me, it feels like I have been hit over the head with a heavy log and my whole body plummets to the ground. My feet feel like they have somehow been superglued to the ground, unable to move or release that horrid feeling of failing - yet again.

My mood changes. My smile disappears. My vision becomes blurred. I feel beaten down. 

My first thoughts are not of how I can get myself out of the position of "failure" but of how I got there in the first place. I analyze every single aspect of what led me to that position then I go over it over and over again.

At some point, this exhausts me. I come to a point where I realize that there is only so much you can go over and while you may have failed, you certainly can't change the fact that it happened. What you can do is understand it better, learn from it and then recover.

In the learning phase, my thoughts always lead to how I can minimise the impact of the failure. What can I do to lessen the extent of failing? Who does the failure impact and what have I done to help them better understand what has happened and what solutions I plan to put in place to fix the problem. What can I learn from this? How can I improve the way I manage failure?

Failure is bad

We are all programmed at a young age to believe that failure is bad. But it is in failure we understand our true self. The person we are. How we handle failure and learn from it is the essence of what type of person we are and how strong and resilient we are when things don't go our way.

Mostly when people fail, they place blame. If something fails in my business, I never blame another. I blame myself. But even in this thought process, it doesn't make sense. Failure is something that we should never blame someone for, even ourselves. It is inevitable that we will all fail over and over again. Instead of seeing a negative, see a positive. Embrace it. Not in the way you say it's ok to make the same mistakes over and over again, but more in a way that says that this happened, I've learned a few lessons, and next time I am going to handle it better.

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comments ( 2 )
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  • Jasmin Romic
    Jasmin Romic
    15 Apr 2015

    Failure is the benchmark by which I can measure the elation of success, as sure as there will be rain after sunshine, there will be failure and then the certainty that the next high is always around the corner.

    Rationalising failure and accepting the inevitable cyclical downturns in business, actually feeds my resilience. Each challenge I overcome and each failure I forgive myself, makes me believe that maybe, just maybe, I'm actually meant to be in business and I have what it takes to thrive - some intangible strength that can weather the storms.