4 Ways to Transform Your Failure into Strength
A career endeavor is a dichotomous path between success and failure. Get what you worked for and you will end up succeeding. Fall short of strategical approach and hard work, and you're a failure. There is no in-between.
One thing we can both agree on is that success is never an easy path no matter how you slice it. Unlike failure, success demands you to be a game-player— to never run out of ideas and to always be prepared for the bigger obstacles that will inevitably batter your journey.
When we think of success, we think that hard skills are the go-no-go of our careers. Well, you are not technically wrong— but a healthy mindset is just as crucial so as to reach your destination triumphantly.
We never talk about it enough, but your failure in the past can play a big role in shifting your mindset. Here are four important ways your failures can gain you advantages that you may not gain otherwise.
1. Turn your emotions from failure to positivity
When we hear of failure, it’s easy to imply that you gained nothing from that experience. The energy and hours of work you allot to a certain endeavor have gone to waste. That is how it may seem like— at least from the outside.
But through moments of contemplating, you will realize that your failure gained you a new perspective. Throughout our lives, we were taught the qualities to succeed, but what about the qualities we gained from failure?
Think about the good things that come from your failure. In the book The Road to Character, author David Brooks points out that notable leaders needed to face struggles in order to heighten their characters. Only when you have gone through failure will you experience the harsh lessons in life and become stronger for it. Most importantly, only through failure will you truly appreciate the value of humility, sympathy, and self-confrontation.
2. Reevaluate failure as a motivation
When you experience failure, try to regulate your negative emotions. This would allow you to cope with difficult events and depression tendencies. The process of doing so is called cognitive reappraisal in psychology. Cognitive reappraisal is the process of framing your emotions during a stressful event.
For instance, you have failed a job interview in the company of your dream. Naturally, you will feel sadness and disappointment. You might feel as though everything is letting you down. But then, try to look at your failure through rose-colored glasses; you will realize that there’s more to that experience than failure. Maybe it’s just a test to prepare you for a bigger opportunity or maybe it's a sign that the job isn’t for you. Either way, looking at your failures in a positive light will help you become a forward-thinker.
Just like Winston Churchill said, “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”
Failure is never the end road. It is just an innate part of the journey required for you to improve yourself. There are other opportunities out there and maybe failure is just a way of opening yourself to those opportunities.
3. Consider failure as a lesson
As scary as it may sound, everyone fails in life. At one point or another, failure will come biting you in the back. The problem, however, is most people associate failure with complete defeat. It shouldn’t be that way.
Through failures, you will learn most of the important lessons. When failure happens, you will begin to redefine your priorities in life. It will make you more compassionate. Most of all, you will realize that it isn’t the end of the road.
From a perspective, you need to open yourself to failure. Instead of finding something or someone to blame or pretending nothing happened, acknowledge that failure occurred and consider it as a learning opportunity. Find your take away from that experience and use it as a tool for improvement.
4. Apply the skills you have learned from your failure
Just like the old saying goes, failure is the best teacher. Going through all sorts of failures, you probably have gained a skill or lesson that you can implement on your next plan.
Whether it’s learning to trust people with reservations or learning the importance of teamwork, it is time to apply these lessons to something else. We know that failure sucks, especially when you invested years of your life only to end up hitting a roadblock. But try to channel that failure wisely; in the end, you will realize that your failure is a road towards something bigger.
The most important thing you will gain from your failure is a lesson— and it is always the learning part that will shape you to become successful.
© 2020 Marlito Dungog