"Failure: The Key to Your Success!"
Dear Success Seeker,
The fact that you are reading this newsletter tells me something about you. I know you want something more in your life than you have now - and you are serious about getting it. Otherwise why would you be reading an article on how to get ahead?
So let's cut to the unpleasant truth. One of the fastest and most effective ways for you to grow yourself and improve your results is to fail more often. Not that all failure is beneficial. My past experience as a professional hang glider pilot taught me that some failures really can be fatal. But the vast majority of what we call 'failures' are actually tremendous opportunities. It is virtually impossible to succeed to a high level without failing along the way. And if you want to get ahead, the faster, bigger and more frequently you fail the better!
There is plenty of evidence to support what I am saying. Searching the topic online I found more articles, stories and quotes related to the importance of failure than any other topic I have ever researched. Most of the world's most successful people have experienced massive failures, from Abraham Lincoln, Albert Einstein and Henry Ford to Oprah, Steven Speilberg and J.K.Rowling. Both Sir Richard Branson and Donald Trump have had magazine articles written about them highlighting their many failures.
You've heard this before and you know it is true. Yet you still proceed cautiously, avoiding failure at all costs. Why? Because it is human nature to be afraid of failure. Here are three underlying fears that are likely holding you back.
First, your fear-based mind has convinced you that failing is dangerous to your survival. In situations involving risk your mind exaggerates the consequences and imagines the worst-case scenario, causing you to slam on the brakes. If you were to step back and take a more objective view you would realize that it is just a story you are making up. But it is darned hard to be objective when dealing with a subconscious fear!
The second fear is the fear of looking foolish to others. Worrying about the opinion, criticism and approval of others causes you to focus on conforming instead of getting ahead. You spend your time and energy avoiding anything that might result in you standing out, looking stupid or being judged negatively. This is the most devastating fear of all. It completely stifles your creativity, self-expression and forward progress.
A third fear involves concerns about what failure would do to your belief in yourself. At some level all of us are afraid we are inadequate. Failures can be used as evidence to increase your self-doubt.
Given these deep-seated fears, how is it possible to embrace failure so you can take the actions and risks required to achieve your goals? The following strategies will help.
The most crucial step is for you to change the way you view failure. You must separate what happened from what you think it means about you. The fact that you did not achieve the result that you wanted may be a failure in your performance, but it does not make YOU a failure! Failure is a viewpoint that happens in your head. What happens externally is just feedback.
Don't miss the opportunity to learn from your experience. Make a list of ways your 'failure' could be viewed positively. How did it benefit you or move you forward? Stretch your mind and make as long a list as you can. Also look at what you learned from what happened. What will you do differently next time?
A radical but highly-effective solution is to actually celebrate your failures. Reward yourself. Have a party. After all, as long as you learned something from them, you are better off than you were before. Celebrating failure is beneficial because it causes your mind to let go of any self-critical thinking you are having and focus on the positives. This will make you more willing to take beneficial risks in the future.
Take a moment now to list some risks or possible failures you are avoiding. Identify the ones that are limiting your success and make a plan for moving forward with them. Because at the end of the day, the surest way for you to fail is to avoid failure.
Andrew Barber-Starkey, Master Certified Coach
Founder and President, ProCoach Success System
Would you like to receive private Business Coaching from Andrew?
Email Pam@ProCoachSystem.com or call 604-983-8041 for details
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Andrew Barber-Starkey is a Master Certified Coach residing in Vancouver, Canada. His coaching program, the ProCoach Success System, is designed for entrepreneurs, small-business owners, self-employed and commissioned sales people who want to double their income while simultaneously doubling their time off within 3 years.
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