You build on failure. Use it as a stepping stone and close the door on the past. Don’t try to forget the mistakes, but don’t dwell on it.– Johnny Cash
At some point, whether in school or on the job, we were taught that failure is bad. Many of us were led to believe that if we don’t achieve our goal, it’s time to throw in the towel and find a new (more realistic) goal. We carry that with us into our careers and our businesses. We avoid putting ourselves out there because… what if we fail?
Truthfully, playing it safe doesn’t do anyone any good. Our world doesn’t need any more people who avoid taking chances. Our world needs rock stars (in every industry), who push limits, invent new things, and spread new ideas.
Will every step be a success? No. But failure is our friend. Failure is feedback.
As humans, it’s pretty easy to judge others. When you haven’t been in someone’s shoes, it’s difficult to understand why they do what they do, say what they say, and feel the way they feel. When you’ve failed at something, when you’ve attempted something and fallen flat on your face, it becomes a lot easier to have compassion and even empathy for others.
The great thing? Being honest and vulnerable about your failures allows others to have more compassion and empathy for you! First, be honest with yourself and then with others.
When faced with a setback or a failure, some people will give up. They’ll convince themselves they just don’t have what it takes and retreat back to a safe space. Others (those who eventually succeed) will go back to the drawing board. They’ll look at what they did and what came of it, then they’ll tweak their process, invent a new product, or look for new ways to achieve their goal. They innovate and eventually hit their desired mark. Use failure as your GPS.
Think this only happens in the business world? Think again. Lady Gaga, an 8+ time Grammy winner, only got into singing because her acting career wasn’t taking off. After being turned down time and time again, she began her music career and became the star we know and love today. But she didn’t stop there. She got her break in acting and is now an award-winning musician AND actress!
When you face failure, you have the opportunity to stand up, dust yourself off, and keep going. Resilience is a muscle, and the more you put yourself out into the world, the stronger you become. You develop the coping mechanisms necessary to deal with the challenges and learn to keep going after your dreams, no matter how many times you fall.
Jimi Hendrix was booed off stage when he opened for the Monkees. Elvis was kicked out of the Grand Ole Opry. Madonna’s first band was dropped by their record label. Imagine if they hadn’t been resilient and kept at their dreams.
It’s time to make friends with failure. Use it as feedback and then that feedback becomes your GPS. Instead of looking at failure as a bad thing, look at it as the first step along the journey to success. Fail fast. Fail often. Fail Forward. Learn from your mistakes, and before you know it, you’ll reach your goals.
For more rock star tips on celebrating when you fail, visit https://www.marvellessmark.com/.