5 ways to bounce back from failure

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I was in a beauty pageant.

When I was 11 years old, I was home & my mom was watching a daytime talk show. Sally Jesse Raphael I think & there was a segment on pageants.

And I was hooked.

I was dying to enter one & with my mom’s encouragement, I did!

My mom went all out & had my evening gown professionally made, my hair & makeup done by professionals.

I loved it. And I didn’t win.

I was crushed. Looking back, I wish my parents had encouraged me to keep trying. But they allowed me to stop. I appreciate the compassion they showed me by not forcing me to keep entering pageants.

But…

I didn’t learn how to fail. I didn’t learn how to understand that even though I didn’t win, I wasn’t a failure.

Two things I know to be true:

  1. Failure can threaten your sense of self-worth.

  2. The bravest people I know are deeply intimate with failure.

But once we lick our wounds, if you can open up to the gifts of failure you’ll see they play a huge part in your success.

Do not fear failure but please be terrified of regret.
— Deshauna Barber

5 WAYS TO BOUNCE BACK FROM FAILURE

FIND OPPORTUNITIES TO LEARN SOMETHING THAT HELPS YOU SUCCEED LATER

If you choose to find where you could’ve made a different choice you can create a plan to help you going forward when you try again.

You can move forward better prepared & feel more confident. You’ll have learned something & you can use that skill going forward - maybe in a situation you didn’t even realize this “failure” would come in handy.

STRENGTHEN YOUR RESILIENCY

If you let it, your failure can actually increase your self-confidence. As you grow from your experience, you’ll be reinforcing your self-efficacy. You’ll get better at knowing you can make it through difficult times.

IMPROVE YOUR AWARENESS, FOCUS, & DETERMINATION

When you try to do something, something you desire so deeply that you feel the longing in your bones, & you don’t succeed is the perfect time to honestly review & refine your action plan -

  • Do I need to improve my skill?

  • Do I need a better plan?

  • Do I need more preparation?

SEE FAILURE AS YOUR FRIEND

What are the positives? Let’s think about the gym, instead of obsessing over not being able to make it to the gym four times this week, you take a 30 minute walk during lunch instead. You changed your emotional state by taking action. Instead of beating yourself up you figured out how to hit your health goal even if it looks a little different than you intended.

See if you can find a way to let your “failure” inspire you to approach a goal differently.

PRACTICE SELF-COMPASSION

Failure sucks. You’re disappointed, sad, confused, or scared.

After eating a box of cookies, having a good cry, or venting to a trusted friend, here’s what I want to remember: Your self-worth is not tied to this moment of failure.

Each time you “fail,” you’re being given the chance to grow by discovering an outdated belief, changing an unsupportive habit, & creating a better experience with how you handle setbacks in the future.

You’re not just going to deal with failure, you’re going to deal with it fully by finding the seeds of possibility underneath the weeds,& boosting your self-confidence so that you can keep courageously pursuing your goals.

 
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