Are you afraid of failure? Or do you always try to not make any mistakes? Well, both mistakes and failures are a big part of our lives. However, mistakes and failures can’t define you.
A few years ago, I attended a remote seminar organized by one of the biggest American Universities. There was a full day dedicated to a method called Intelligent Fast Failure. This method was actually a bit of a trial-and-error method until you get the desired result. In simple words, it meant that the sooner and the more you fail, the more chances you have to succeed.
Until I took this seminar, I was quite a perfectionist. Usually, I would prefer to study all the available theoretical material before I ever try to do something on my own. I was really afraid of taking any action that would lead to failure. I just wanted to make everything right the first time I try. But even if I had spent hours or even days studying something, I hardly ever could make it right the first time I tried.
It felt like this seminar opened my eyes not only to how I should approach scientific experiments or new projects at my work, but even to how I approach life and new experiences.
When I went through the biographies of some people I admired for their success, I found out that none of them succeeded overnight. They actually made lots of mistakes and failed many times. However, they never allowed their mistakes and failures to define them. Why? Because mistakes and failures cannot define you. They are just part of your life and not the end of your life.
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”Winston S. Churchill
Why Mistakes and Failures Can’t Define You
1. Mistakes and Failures Cannot be Personalized.
Both mistakes and failures are just events that happen during our journey in life. Trust yourself, take risks, and make mistakes. Step out of your comfort zone and translate your failures as steps that can lead to success.
The way you choose to translate failure moves you forward or holds you back. See everything as a lesson from which you can gain something new.
“Failure is only the opportunity more intelligently to begin again.”Henry Ford
2. Sometimes We All Suck in Life and That is OK.
At some point, we all mess things up. We make awful mistakes and appear less than what we wanted to. Truth is that we are all humans and nobody is perfect. We’re all allowed to make mistakes and fail.
To fail and to make mistakes means you try to do something and as long as you are alive, you always try to do your best. Just sometimes your best is not good enough, and that is OK.
“Life is full of screwups. You’re supposed to fail sometimes. It’s a required part of the human existance.”Sarah Dessen, Along for the Ride
3. If you Make Mistakes and Fail it is Most Possible, You will Eventually Make it Right or Succeed.
I used to have a teacher who every time I would make a mistake would tell me it is ok and the only person who makes no mistakes is the one who never does something.
Yes, making mistakes and failing means that there is room available for you to grow into something better and bigger. It is most possible that at some point, you will make it right and succeed.
“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”Thomas A. Edison
4. You are Much More Than Your Mistakes or Your Failures.
Sometimes you have this tendency to call mistakes the things that happened that did not turn out the way you had planned them and wanted them to be. Even if they were mistakes, accept them and do not let them define you and your value as an individual. Sometimes those mistakes or failures exist to show you the way to something different, which could be a better fit for you.
“A thinker sees his own actions as experiments and questions–as attempts to find out something. Success and failure are for him answers above all.”Friedrich Nietzsche
5. Mistakes and Failure Can Teach You Forgiveness
Maybe the most valuable lesson you can take from your failures and mistakes is how to be gentle with yourself and forgive him. We usually find it easier to forgive others than we find it to forgive ourselves.
Failures, mistakes, struggles, and hurt are inevitable in life. You must learn to forgive and let go, otherwise you might suffer constant hurt and pain.
“You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.”Maya Angelou
6. Through Mistakes You Can Overcome Your Fears
People are usually afraid of making mistakes or trying to do new things. How could you ever understand if something is a good fit for you without ever trying? And how could you ever become good at something without being really bad at it at first?
We are all afraid, but through daring choices, mistakes, and failures, we push our lives forward and grow as persons.
“There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.”Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist
7. If You Make Mistakes You Have No Regrets
Most people, when they grow older and think back on their lives, remember things they regret and wish they weren’t that coward and attempted to do this crazy thing they kept on thinking about.
If they had attempted it even though it might not turn out well, at least they would have taken it out of their systems. This choice that they never made would not return to their minds as regret.
“Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavor.”Truman Capote
Read also: How to Stop The Need to Control Everything
Final Thoughts on Why Mistakes and Failures Can’t Define You
Failures and mistakes are all part of our journey in life. We all make mistakes and we will all fail some time during our lives. None of them should be taken personally. When you meet them, treat them as stepping stones to your road to something bigger. Identify them as what they are, events that occur in order to teach you a lesson.
Mistakes and failures can’t define neither you nor your value.
“You make mistakes, mistakes don’t make you”Maxwell Maltz
What do you think about failures and mistakes?
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