Are you sick of being afraid? Learn how to overcome the fear of failure once and for all with these 13 simple ways. The decision is yours.
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An old proverb reminds us that “success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan.” To learn from failure, however, you have to “own” it. You have to figure out what went wrong and what to do better next time. If you don’t, you’re liable to repeat your errors in the future.
A few years ago on a college campus, a ceramics professor decided to try an experiment on one of his classes. At the start of the semester he divided the class into two groups and explained that each group would be graded differently.
Group 1 would be graded on the total number of pots they could create throughout the semester, with a minor importance given to quality.
Group 2 would be graded on just one pot. They had all semester to work on just one pot so they better make it impressive.
At the end of the semester, the students all turned in their work for grading. To the professor’s amusement, the 5 highest quality pots all came from the group who was focused on quantity over quality. In fact, most of the pots from Group 2 were terrible. They just looked like over-worked lumps of hollowed out clay.
Why did this happen?
Some mistakes may be bigger than others, or may have more significance to us and/or longer lasting consequences.
Nonetheless it can still be hard to move on.
We have all had to learn to cope with our feelings and the consequences when we screw up because we all do and we all will again.
Here are 5 steps to go through in order to move on.
Here are 3 types of successes people rarely stop to recognize:
1) Concrete steps taken towards larger goals.
2) Successes of PERSONAL value, but not necessarily recognized by others.
3) Our failures AND mistakes. Overcoming failures and mistakes MUST be celebrated. If we have failed – it is because we risked and it is only by risking that we make changes in our lives. Plus, when we reject our mistakes and failures we also reject a part of ourselves.
Suggestion: Set up a session to help your client celebrate their success – and honour themselves. And not only are you celebrating, you’re reframing success and failure, and building their self-esteem too!
Failure is nothing to be ashamed of!
We live in a competitive society that has big winners and big losers. Educators, motivation experts, life coaches, sport psychologists and other mentors mainly teach us how to approach success, how to be winners. Few teach us a much more valuable lesson – how to cope with failure.
A society that worships winners tends to make horrible choices, whether considered from a moral, or a practical, perspective.
How we define two simple concepts can ultimately lead to brilliant work or paralysis.
The two things that will paralyze us creatively faster than any others:
Ariana Amorim's insight:
"(...) when she was a child her father made it a habit to ask on a regular basis “what did you fail at this week?” When she replied, “nothing” he would retort, “Oh…that’s too bad.”
Of this ritual she says, "My definition of failure became ‘not trying’, not the outcome."
This weekend I came across a video of kids breaking through wooden boards with their hands. I was curious about the technique that these kids were taught in karate class so I started researching it.
The first page I found was at www.WikiHow.com, which had an article called “How to Break a Board with Your Bare Hand.”
As I read through the steps, I was amazed at how similar the steps for breaking a board are to the steps for overcoming all other obstacles in life.
"Typically, when people fail, we blame them. Or teach them. Or try to make them feel better. All of which, paradoxically, makes them feel worse. It also prompts defensiveness as an act of self-preservation. (If I'm not okay after a failure, I'd better figure out how to frame this thing so it's not my failure.)
Our intentions are fine; we want the person to feel better, to learn, to avoid the mistake again. We want to protect our teams and our organizations.
But the learning — the avoidance of future failures — only comes once they feel okay about themselves after failing. And that feeling comes from empathy."