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The Importance of Failure (164/365)

Failure doesn’t happen to me, it happens for me.

Failure is nothing more than an opportunity to learn and to grow.

First attempt in…you get the idea.

Words like these are easier to say, once on the other side…of failure.

Headed towards failure, in the middle of it, and even right after it, these words mean very little. And while the feeling dissipates, what I’ve learned has stayed with me, and has helped to define and shape the person I am today.

One failure in particular stands out, to this day.

It involves the job I wanted (and didn’t get).

Getting comfortable isn’t something you should aspire to be.

So, when the opportunity presents itself, I go for it. And, I give it my all.

My first experience with this was outside of my area of expertise. The state I was in, I thought running towards something new (or maybe it was running away from something familiar) would help.

So, I went for it,. I progressed. And I grew in confidence. I surprised myself.

And then, I failed.

And it hurt.

But I learned.

And today, years later, I am better for it.

So, what did I learn?

5 Questions I Ask Myself Based on Lessons Failure Has Taught Me

  • What do I (we) value?

  • What’s most important here, and is that where my focus and energy is?

  • Am I surrounding myself with people who matter, who will remind me of what matters, when I become distracted or discouraged?

  • Am I zooming out on something I should really be zooming in on?

  • Is my work here done? If not, when will I know it is?

Years later, these questions (and their answers) float in my head, and often, from my lips.

And they remind me, sure, I failed. And…I learned.

Click here to visit the Learning Leadership 365 site, where you may read all posts I've written.


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