Nobody likes to fail. Failure means you did not do well enough, it means that you are not yet ready, and it means that you have to try again. However, it is the ability to pick yourself up and try again that will make you stand out. In fact, it could be said that failing is just part of the process of being successful. Like with riding a bicycle, you need to fall off a few times before you get your balance. Worse than trying and failing is failing to try since that is the only true failure.
A look back at the lives of some of the greatest minds in history will show that there was failure before there was success. Leonardo Da Vinci struggled for 16 years to finish the Mona Lisa, Thomas Edison had several failed ventures before finding success with the creation of the lightbulb, and Colonel Sanders of Kentucky Fried Chicken fame had doors slammed in his face time after time as he tried to find backing for his now-globally-successful recipe.
Failure shows us what we have done wrong, teaches us lessons and allows us to streamline our ideas. The fact is, if you push yourself you will most-likely face failure along the way. The important thing is how you deal with it and bounce back.
Of course, nobody wants to fail, and it can be disheartening when you feel you have given your all. But if you treat your failures as a lesson that you can learn from, then they can become a positive. That said, your failures may not always be easy to accept – whether that is not getting the grades you hoped for or being turned down for a job - so it is worth working hard on your essay, revision, or to avoid the most common interview mistakes. If you don’t do the work, then the reason for your failure is probably obvious, but if you worked hard and still didn’t succeed then you can look at what you can do better next time.
It is all about the difference between not putting in the effort and failing or trying, failing, and yet learning from the experience and coming back to try again.
Ideally, your first attempt will be good enough to get your through and succeed, but you will face challenges at times, and these may include moments when you don’t manage to get where (or what) you wanted.
When it comes to your study, failure can highlight areas that you need to improve on next time, while failing can also show gaps in your knowledge or experience that you can address. Recognising this and doing something about it is the mark of success. It is part of the process. When asked if you can swim or ride a bicycle you probably won’t mention the times when you needed armbands or fell off the bike – you will just look straight to the results – the success.
The most successful people are those who are willing to try, accept their failures, test the process and return to try again. Give yourself the best chance of success, seek out advice where you can, and let yourself be inspired, but most of all – don’t be afraid to get up, dust yourself down, and try again.