Failure is part of life, debacles are part of living and disasters are most certainly part of business. It comes with the territory. No one has ever become wildly successful who has not been through some major failure.
But for many of us our first instinct when it comes to failure is to be ashamed or embarrassed. Maybe it's because we don't like how failure makes us feel, or we think we should know better. We treat failure as if we have done something wrong and now have to be humiliated.
But the truth is failure will always be a big part of our success story, so the sooner we stop shaming our failures the better off we will be in utilizing their lessons.
Let's start by looking at six surefire ways that failure can lead you to success:
1. Be careful how you talk to yourself, because you're also listening. Handle your self-talk or else it will make you feel like you are worthless. This is critically important. When failure stings, let it sting for a moment and then do everything you can to talk positively to yourself to get you back on track. Stay open and affirming with yourself.
2. It's better to do something imperfectly than to do nothing perfectly. The worst type of failure is doing nothing. When you choose to do nothing, you're actually risking the biggest mistake of all, which is making sure nothing happens.
3. We are products of our past, but we don't have to let our mistakes define us. Just because your past did not turn out as you might have hoped does not mean your future cannot be better than you envisioned. Most people are afraid to talk about their past failures, because they are sacred of being defined by them.
4. The enemy of success is not failure but the fear of success. When fear leads to apathy and doing nothing, the way to move past yourself is to face failure rather then to avoid it. When the fear of doing nothing exceeds the fear of doing it wrong, that is when the work finally begins.
5. Consistent action creates consistent results. Strength does not come from what you can do; it comes from overcoming the things you once thought you could not do. So let yourself fall down, but learn to dust yourself off and get up and move forward. Consistency is key to success.
6. You can't do it alone, and you don't have to. Sometimes our failures keep us stuck in our old ways and we just need some support to get past our bad habits. Find a coach, a mentor, a friend who supports you in your efforts and has the experience to get you past your own bad habits so you can move toward your success.
Failure is the only way to grow, develop and learn, because it is how we learn to succeed.