Overcoming Failure

July 12, 2015

Feeling as if I've failed at a task/goal is something I'm not good at dealing with, mix that with being a perfectionist, well it doesn't go down well. Everyone has their fair share of failures and what they class as failure. You might have failed an exam, failed getting out of bed this morning or failed at beating a personal best at the gym. Everyone has degrees of failure, my failure might necessarily not be a failure to you.

My failures come when I'm baking and the cake I bake doesn't turn out how I wanted it to look, or more importantly doesn't look good enough for the Instagram aesthetic, this bows down to my perfectionist trait. I'm a writer, or I like to call myself that or aim to have that title and when a piece I'm writing doesn't look how I want it to or my quality of writing isn't great I feel like a failure and it upsets me a lot. Failure also comes to me when I'm exercising, if I set out for a run with a specific goal in mind, but for some reason (fatigue or weather issues) I don't reach that goal, I have to stop and often I walk the remaining distance. This is my biggest feeling of failure and it kills me, bats me down and makes me feel worse about such a minor situation. I'm actually scared of failure, it prevents me from taking opportunities because I'm so terrified of not succeeding.

Despite the feeling of failure, I'm trying to turn those negative "I give up" feelings into something positive. If I've failed due to making a mistake, I realise now that it was a mistake and only a minor setback. So I'm putting together a few points of how to overcome that failure and turn it into something positive and uplifting, change that negative emotion into motivation to do better next time.

  1. You are not your failures. Do not let them define you as a person. 
  2. Try again next time, whether that's tomorrow or next week. You always have time. All us humans have is time, use it efficiently and to your best ability. 
  3. Don't dwell on your failures. Easier said than done, I know that too well. Forget about it, it's not the end of the world. Dwelling on your failures will only make you feel worse about the situation, if you focus on what you've done wrong, you're never going to get it right. Yes, address where you went wrong and correct it next time. 
  4. You have more chances. You might have failed that test or been unsuccessful in a job interview but there's always another time to succeed. 
  5. Tomorrow is a new day. Remember that. Start afresh. Forget what happened yesterday.
You're not the only human being to fail. Did you know that Thomas Edison failed at least 1,000 times before creating the light-bulb? Walt Disney was told he lacked imagination and had no good ideas, look at what Disney has become. 

Remember what happens today, you can change tomorrow. So what if you failed that test? So what if you skipped the gym today? So what if you burned dinner? SO WHAT. Life is full of mistakes but YOU are not your mistakes.

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