For many of us, failures are crippling. Even the fear of failure can freeze us like a rabbit in the headlights. And yet, when you look at the lives of many great people, you almost always read of the failures that marked their lives and the twisting of destiny to turn these disasters into success. With luck, this starts you thinking of your own catastrophes! Good. Pick them apart. Don't wallow in them like a piggy in mud. Scratch at them to see what happened and what you can learn. Pain avoidance says, "Close that door now!" But if you've had the agony and learned nothing it's like paying the price and not getting anything in return. So, we just let the status quo be. At least, there is comfort in stability. But as time goes on, you start losing confidence to do anything. The cocoon thickens. Life is passing you by but you are safe. You're really not living, jut serving time. Not a great scenario.
It's time to deal with failure. Part of the hand we are dealt in life is the failure card. Only those who have stopped living will not commit mistakes. Everyday will be laced with little mess-ups as we mistakenly play that card. And, without trying to sound like a marine sergeant, "it ain't how far ya fall...it's how fast ya get up!" Here are some tips to keep going.
Create healthy patterns of thought. Many of us have developed bad mental habits. We fill our thoughts with all the mistakes we have made at one time or another and let these play in our minds punishing us over and over again. We seem to let these foul-ups paralyze us from doing anything else for fear of failing again. Rather than allow these negative thoughts to paralyze us and stop us from trying something we have not done before, let us start changing the picture. Let us start thinking of the many moments when we were in our glory, when we accomplished what we thought was just beyond our ability to do so. Think of the last time you made someone feel good or you were complimented. Try this each day for a month and you're on the road to trumping the failure card.
Extend the energy of love, generosity and spirit. When you do this each time you have a chance, you let go of failure. You will spread success. Do this especially when you are feeling down. Go out and let people know how good they are. Tell them what a good job they're doing. Let them know how much you appreciate what they do for you. The more you do this to people, the more you feel success. When we let others know we value them, we end up seeing more value in ourselves.
Get in touch with the cheerleader inside of you, not with the critic. Yes, always think of the things you appreciate in your self, the things you have done well. Remember, "I think of a few of my favourite things and then I don't feeeeeeeeeeel sooo bad". Corny...but it really works. Congratulate yourself. Make this a habit each time you end your day. You will be surprised at how much energy you have to create more success in your life.
Forgive yourself. We often think that if we forgive ourselves too often, we will never change at all. So we get very hard with ourselves. We keep blaming ourselves, "I really should not have done that." "I have already won the doofus Oscar for 2009." That is not the point. You accept responsibility for your action. No denials. No transfer of guilt to someone else. You forgive yourself so you can move on. You can spend the energy focusing on your goal and not on fretting over something that did not go right. Actually, if you squint just right and look at what happened, you might get a good laugh!
Accept failing as part of learning and growing. Only when you try to reach beyond yourself and try something new do you encounter failure. If you just stick to what you have already mastered so well, you will just have the failure of inertia. No vital signs. Another pot hole on life's highway! Failure is part of learning and growing, part of trying out and reaching beyond what is already there. Sometimes, to create something new, you need to make a long journey and the first few steps often are failings. If you get discouraged, you'll never do anything at all, let alone great.
Often, the temptation is always to look back before taking another step. Just keep moving on. You can't drive ahead looking into the rear view mirror. You tried one thing. It failed. Try another way. Fretting about mistakes you made take a lot of energy and time which can be used to take positive steps or create something to improve your life. And remember, it's not our failures that make us, it's how we manage them. So, "get off yer duff and get moovin".