Why do some people appear to excel at just about everything they attempt? Why do some people become successful in spite of extraordinary hardships? Why do some people always make things happen? What makes the difference between becoming an achiever rather than one who simply accepts their circumstances.
In life we will all face problems, roadblocks, and experience failure. The difference in people is how they perceive and react to mistakes and defeat. How we view failure and how we react to it will have the biggest impact on our success. When we cannot see beyond the fear of failing it paralyzes our actions. When we see failure as an opportunity to learn and propel us forward, we will be able to keep achieving. Unfortunately this winning attitude is not something taught in schools- but fortunately it is an attitude that can be learned. Prospering from failure is fundamental for success. Understanding the benefits of failure and how to successfully fail forward is one of single most important attitudes necessary to accomplish whatever it is your heart desires.
I would like to share with you what I learned from John C. Maxwell’s book, Failing Forward. Hopefully the following personal growth tips will help you to change your attitude about failure, allowing you to move forward while turning your mistakes into learning opportunities. Jump start your opportunities to succeed by adopting the following attitudes about failure:
1) What is your attitude about failure? Do you blame others? Do you continue to repeat the same mistakes? Do you expect to fail? Are you afraid to place yourself in new situations due to a fear of failure? Does failure make you feel inadequate?
Solution: learn to look at failure differently. Most people are too quick to judge events in their lives as failures. It is important to understand failure is unavoidable. You must learn to focus on the learning process of your journey and not the successful or failing events along the way. Failure is not final or irreversible, but rather only a detour on the road toward achievement. Failure is not disgraceful, but rather a stepping stone to ultimate success.
Everyone fails! Remember three steps forward and two steps backward still equals one step forward. The people who succeed do so because they are determined and persistent. It is longevity that gives us the opportunity to eventually succeed.
2) Do you personalize failure? Do you use doubtful or negative language to yourself about your abilities? Do you feel mistakes label you as a failure? Yes, failures can be very disappointing and hurtful, however it is very important not to personalize your mistakes.
Solution: You must believe failing experiences do not make you a failure. Failing is nothing more than an event from an experimental action resulting from your efforts to courageously move forward. You must realize everyone who has succeeded or achieved anything has incurred several failures along the way, yet they never thought of themselves as a failure – so why should you?
3) Does the fear of failure paralyze you from moving forward? For many people the pain from past failing experiences leads to a fear of failure. The result is you get stuck; you become afraid to act for fear of failing; the thought of a fearful experience overwhelms you. When you get caught in a fear trap you find yourself procrastinating, making excuses, feeling hopeless, purposeless, and paralyzed. When you are afraid to fail you become afraid to take new actions; when you are afraid to take new actions, it becomes impossible to learn and move your life forward to reach your fullest potential.
Solution: Understand you cannot avoid feelings of fear. You ultimately must decide to just “do it.” The only way to overcome your fears is to simply take action and feel the fear. As you move forward, remember you will undoubtedly make many mistakes. Employ the attitude mistakes are healthy; the more mistakes you make, the more experience you will gain; your new experiences will bring you new insights and competence. Whenever you take the initiative to act you give yourself the opportunity to experience small successes as well as learn to deal with your fears of failing. The more you keep moving forward, in spite of your fears of failure, the easier it will become to take action toward your goals.
To grow to your fullest potential you must pursue new paths. When you push forward toward new goals you will learn from your new experiences, accelerating your personal growth. To thrive from the inevitable number of failing events action oriented people undoubtedly incur, focus on the following:
1) View failing as an opportunity to learn and move forward.
2) Take personal responsibility for your failures.
3) Never personalize failing experiences. Your performance is never tied to your worth.
4) Search for the learning opportunity in every failing life event and experience.
5) Focus on the growth process of your journey rather than a single failing event.
6) Understand failures are isolated events; they do not have to stop you from continuing to pursue your goals.
7) Just do it. Never let the fear of failure paralyze you.
8) Keep expectations realistic.
9) Focus on utilizing your strengths to propel you forward
10) Derive satisfaction from small steps of success
11) Understand it is persistence and determination that give you the longevity required to present you with winning opportunities.
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