Failure, what a daunting word. We don’t even want to think about it because the mere thought of failing makes us feel as if we are not good enough. If this thought hits close to home, allow me to shine a light on failure and the act of failing.
First of all, give yourself some credit if you’ve felt that you’ve failed at some point in your life because failing is a good thing. Making mistakes is proof that you are out there, courageously fighting in the battle instead of opting to be mere spectators in the sideline of this game we called life.
Failure is subjective which means that you can actually choose its meaning for you. You can either decide whether failing means you’re not good enough and let all the self defeating chatter in your head wins or you can choose to see it as merely “speed bumps” in the your life’s journey.
People often view successful people as people who experienced very little (if any) failures to get to where they are. The truth is, it’s quite the contrary, most successful people admit to have failed much more than they have succeeded. When you take a closer look of their road map to success, more than likely, you’ll find that it is too filled with challenges, setbacks and struggles that they had to overcome. The main difference between the highly successful and those who are “unsuccessful” are their determination in not letting failures define them and stop them from achieving their goals, hopes and dreams.
Colonel Sanders, the founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken, was in his 80’s when he decided to personally go door to door to get people to try his fried chicken recipe. He knocked on over 3000 doors and lived in his car throughout the process. He had thousands of people rejected his product but he was never deterred – he did not let the set backs stop him from making his dream of selling his now legendary fried chicken all over the globe and the rest is history.
JK Rowling, the brains behind the Harry Potter books, was a single mother who was struggling to make ends meet when she wrote one of the most popular book sequels of all time out of cafes. Her struggle continued with multiple publishers rejecting her work before she finally found a publisher that agree to take on her work. Fast forward to today, her work of literature is beloved around the globe, has been made into Hollywood blockbusters and as a result Ms. Rowling is now a billionaire.
What the two inspiring stories above illustrate is that failing is not the end of the road – unless we decide it is. It is up to us to define failure as something that builds our character, provides insightful lessons and feedback to learn from or as something that breaks you down and let you give up on your goals, hopes and dreams. Either way, the ball is entirely in your court.