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How to deal with Failure

Updated on March 5, 2013

How to deal with Failure

There is nobody in this world that never faced a failure. In the time of difficulty and failure, the real character of us comes out. Having a failure and hurdle in life does not matter, what actually matters is, how we deal with this failure. There is a very famous saying that “Life is not bed of roses”, very true. Failures are inevitable. We cannot avoid them but learn to deal with them.

A personal experience

Here is a personal experience I am going to share. I was a brilliant student in school, always stood first. I achieved scholarship in my 8th standard. But there was a period of extreme failure, I faced. I was very ambitious to become a doctor. But in my pre medical, due to some inevitable circumstances, my graph of performance went down badly. It went down so badly that once my biology teacher, Miss Tahira Shujat said,” Uzma, you can do nothing but sitting home and getting married”.it was the worst comment I ever received. It just shattered me and my confidence level decreased to zero. I started thinking; maybe she is right that I don’t have any ability, maybe I can do nothing. Even there was a feeling of “not pursuing further studies” in me. In this situation, my father motivated me. He always used to say, “Uzma, I know you have the capability and you can do best in life”. May be this was his faith in me that I never stopped trying. Despite of so many failures, I kept on trying and my father kept on saying “you have the capability”. I said so many failures, yes that is right. I stood second last in pre medical final exams, hardly passed it. Did not get admission in medical college. My childhood dream of becoming a doctor never fulfilled. Then my father suggested me to do BCS (bachelor in computer sciences). I was so under confident that I refused, I was frightened and said, “Abu, I don’t have ability to study any sciences”. But my father got me admitted in a computer college anyhow. Again, I did not perform very well, was ok and started thinking, oh! Uzma you are such a failure. Computer was not my thing to do. I just went into a wrong field. During BCS, we were offered a subject of management. This subject interested me. At that point I decided to go for MBA( Masters in Business Administration) instead of MCS(Masters of Computer Sciences). Before MBA, I took a course of “Self Improvement”. This course did wonder in me. Gradually, I started gaining my confidence, learnt to deal with failures. My performance started improving and I did so good that I achieved scholarship in MBA too. My father was so happy, he was so proud of me that I still remember that shine of pride in his eyes.

Famous people who faced failure

As I mentioned earlier, there is no one in this world that never faced a failure. In my Self Improvement course, I came to know that there are so many famous people who faced extreme failures before their success. These examples are source of great motivation; I am going to share few of them.

Henry Ford:

Henry ford did wonder in business world by inventing assembly line. He is a true legend but did not get success overnight. His first company went bankrupt due to low quality complaints. His further business attempts also failed badly until his innovative assembly line.

Bill Gates:

Bill Gates is another great example of success after facing failure. But success was not that easy for him also. His first business idea “Traf O Data” with his partner Paul Allen, failed. Then they founded business giant Microsoft.

Margaret Mitchell:

Margaret Mitchell is well known for her classic work “Gone with the wind”. This novel became an inspiration for classic movie Gone with the wind. But this journey of success was not easy for Margaret also. When she wrote this novel, she failed to find a publisher. Her novel was rejected 38 times. After 38 failed attempts, she got a publisher that agreed to publish it. Now, this is a classic.

Albert Einstein:

When we hear Albert Einstein’s name, the first word come to our mind is “Genius”. But in his childhood his parents and teachers thought of him a “Handicapped” as he could not speak a word until he was four, could not read until he was seven and was very slow. At that time, no one could have imagined of him being a great scientist, winning Nobel Prize and changing the world that humanity owes him a lot.

Isaac Newton:

Everyone is familiar with this genius of math and his great work in optics and gravitation. When I learnt his 3 laws of motion, considered him as born genius. Later came to know that he was very poor in school, failed badly in managing his family farm.

Thomas Edison:

He is my favorite example as his teachers also told him that he was too stupid to learn anything. His astonishing work was invention of a light bulb which changed the world, made nights like days. This marvelous invention took him 999 failed attempts, then 1,000th successful attempt.

Abraham Lincoln:

Abraham Lincoln, a great leader. His life is full many failures. When went to war, returned with demotion instead of promotion, had to work again to get his position back. He tried to do business but was failed. He also tried to be a lawyer but faced failure again. In his political career, he faced many failures until becoming president of United States.

These are just few examples, there are many more.

How to face failure

Never blame yourself:

Always remember, you are not the first one or only one who is facing a failure. Some people start blaming themselves and take failure on their heart. Such attitude is not productive; this will never help you any way. So, never blame yourself and have faith in you. Evaluate your strengths and abilities, analyze your mistakes and make plans to achieve your target. These plans should be short and achievable. Hard and unachievable plans may further lead you towards failure as you are already in this situation. Small success will boost your confidence, give you positive energy and will finally help you in achieving your goals.

Never blame others:

Another reaction of failure is that we start blaming others for our failure. Sometimes we blame people around us or system. This sort of attitude is also not productive and not going to help you. Blaming you or blaming others, both are wrong behavior. In spite of wasting your time and energy in blaming others, put your efforts and focus in finding your ways to get out of that failure. Again, my suggestion is analyze everything, your strengths, weaknesses, your mistakes and make small plans to achieve your target. This will definitely lead you towards success.

Never give up:

Very important point is never give up. Keep on trying, one day you will get your success. I heard a very good line that “you are not failure because you fell down but you are failure because you decided to stay down”. If Thomas Edison would had gave up in his 999 unsuccessful attempts then world had never seen a light bulb. If Margaret Mitchell had never tried for 38 times then she could never publish her classic work. So, never give up. Keep on trying.

Remember examples of others:

This is very motivating activity. Whenever, you are facing failure and difficulty, remember the examples of those famous people who got success after many failures. Read about such personalities and try to figure out how they dealt with their failures.

Do not bother your failure:

This may sound stupid or difficult but believe me, the best way to deal your failure is stop bothering it. Usually, we start focusing too much on our failures and difficulties that we fail to notice other good things happening around us. We take our failures on our nerves, by doing so we just generate a negative energy within us. So, just relax, don’t bother. It does not matter if you are in difficulties and facing failure. This situation is temporarily, one day you will definitely get your success. By not bothering failure too much, you will seem more confident and positive.

These are few tips of how to deal with failure. There are many other ways suggested by experts but these are very basic and practical tips, I learnt during my time of failure, are really very helpful.


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    • uzma shaheen profile image

      Uzma Shaheen Bhatti 3 years ago from Lahore,Pakistan

      @lindaSarhan: Thanks for appreciating.

    • LindaSarhan profile image

      L Sarhan 3 years ago

      Great advice!

    • uzma shaheen profile image

      Uzma Shaheen Bhatti 5 years ago from Lahore,Pakistan

      Thank you mark for stopping by and liking my views.

    • profile image

      Mark 5 years ago

      thanks uzma ,your article is very useful

    • uzma shaheen profile image

      Uzma Shaheen Bhatti 5 years ago from Lahore,Pakistan

      @SommerDalton: Thank you so very much for voting up,awesome and interesting. I raelly appreciate your stopping by and commenting.

      PS: you got very interesting advice.thank you for sharing.

    • SommerDalton profile image

      Sommer Dalton 5 years ago

      Voted up, awesome, and interesting! Best advice I ever got "If your going to fail, fail fast and move on!"

    • uzma shaheen profile image

      Uzma Shaheen Bhatti 5 years ago from Lahore,Pakistan

      @tammyswallow: thank you very much for your kind words.

    • tammyswallow profile image

      Tammy 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Great tips! I loved the examples you used. I didn't realize Edison struggled. One thing is clear, this hub is not a failure. :)

    • uzma shaheen profile image

      Uzma Shaheen Bhatti 5 years ago from Lahore,Pakistan

      thank you sister shegarlynn for your encouragement.

    • shegarlynn profile image

      shegarlynn 5 years ago from United States

      I guest, you will not be a successful without any failure in your life. Well done.

    • profile image

      Ars 5 years ago

      Very Motivating .. well written :) ,, And most common problem is we never accept our failure .. and we can't overcome it until we didn't really accept it ..

    • uzma shaheen profile image

      Uzma Shaheen Bhatti 5 years ago from Lahore,Pakistan

      @Alma cabase: I totally agree with you that we learn more from failure than success. thank you for your valuable comment.

    • uzma shaheen profile image

      Uzma Shaheen Bhatti 5 years ago from Lahore,Pakistan

      @free2writ3: failure itself is an awful thing but can be deal with it with will power. thank you very much for stopping by.

    • Alma Cabase profile image

      Alma Cabase 5 years ago from Philippines

      You can learn more from a failure than an accomplishment. This hub is very interesting. Keep it up. ^^

    • Free2writ3 profile image

      Free2writ3 5 years ago from Sharon Hill, Pennsylvania

      Great ideas, dealing with failure is awful but you can deal with it if you choose to.