It is certainly true when they say that “courage is required in this life”. As entrepreneurs and business owners, failure is a huge part of our lives and it happens to each and everyone of us. The difference comes in the way in which we handle this failure and how we allow it to shape us. So can you agree with me that there is a definitely lesson we can learn from our failures? I hope so!
The key is to keep moving forward regardless of our failures, or the number of failed attempts we’ve had. Life and business is full of ups and downs, highs and lows – this stressful rollercoaster of a journey that many of us experience is enough to intimidate even the bravest of entrepreneurs. The best thing about this is that we know the truth – there is always something to learn from every single experience!
Luckily for us, there are many who have gone before us and have failed and learned as they pursued their careers and passions. This gives us access to an immeasurable amount of knowledge and experience to equip us not to avoid failure, but simply to utilize the tools and wisdom from others to overcome and to move past our mistakes on to greater things.
This has prompted me to search high and low for some of the most valuable lessons to be learned from “being wrong”. Below we will discuss 8 lessons that I found most important in my journey as an entrepreneur thus far.
1. Recognizing Poor Choices is an Indication of Growth
When you look back over your decisions from a year ago, you should always find areas where some decisions were a little bit off. When these decisions seem wrong now, it means you are growing and your experiences have changed your knowledge and perception of how to handle those situations in a much better, more efficient manner. If you only live in your “comfort zone” and you never leave the harbour, there is no opportunity for you to mess up or reach your true potential. So challenge yourself to make decisions, and learn from them as you grow in business and in life.
2. Mistakes Are Often Inevitable, So Best Get Started!
The worst decision is indecision. We’ve all experienced life, and we know that mistakes are bound to happen. Therefore the best advice is to get started right away, so that you can learn from these failures sooner than later. There is no “road map” to success and every business and situation is unique. Therefore, often times you have to move quickly and go with your gut. This is a great way to get out there and gain that valuable experience you need to successfully grow, and overcome you limiting beliefs and expectations.
3. Knowledge and Experience Can Lead to Better Decision Making
Gaining experience and putting yourself out there in the world of decision making and failure is a great way to build trust in yourself. Once you’ve already been through a certain situation, you can trust yourself to make sharper, better decisions. And the only way to build this experience is to go out and see what works! You have to put yourself in “experimentation” mode in order to try out new ways of doing things, and discover better ways of making decisions.
4. Impending Failure Should Not be Used as an Excuse
There is no reason to give up simply because you are afraid of failure. The possibility of failure should not prevent you from going out there and trying it for yourself. You have to try your best each and every time. The practice and the effort that you put in are really the determinants that drive your learning and growth process. Don’t be afraid to step out – face your decisions, and any mistakes that may arise, head on. Find the courage to allow yourself to grow and to learn from each and every experience.
5. Sometimes Failure Simply Means Changing Direction
We have to be able to recognize when you need to stop, and simply change direction. Just because you’ve been taking one path for as long as you can remember, doesn’t mean you should close yourself off to trying out new methods. Allow yourself to dream again, open your mind to new possibilities, and truly challenge yourself to take up this new direction that life puts before you.
6. Your Attitude About Failure can make all the difference
Your own attitude towards your failure can be the turning point in your career. Our thoughts and our minds are very powerful in determining our success. Positivity can go a very long way, and can be the difference between staying beaten down and rising from the ashes again.
7. Take the Broader Overview of the Situation
Often times we are so blinded by the current situation at hand, when instead we should be looking ahead to see what possibilities may arise out of it. Taking a step back is the best way to realize what the true reality of your situation is. When you have those short-sighted blinders on, it is impossible to be hopeful for any success to come from a drastic failure. However, if you allow yourself to look beyond your situation, you allow new opportunities to take root and bring life to the situation.
8. Mistakes Will Surface New Opportunities
If you are willing to listen to constructive feedback, you can excel by learning and evolving. From each failure you develop a new set of skills, and you conquer “battles” that will lead you into prosperity. Each day can be like a rollercoaster, with ups and down, and some very unexpected turns. Being adaptable is the real test, and it will determine how you come out on the other side.
What does it mean to feel right? It means that your beliefs perfectly reflect reality. So how are you going to convince all those people who disagree with you? We learn from a really young age that getting things wrong is equated to being lazy, and dumb. This causes us to freak out at the possibility of getting something wrong. So we insist on being right.
Trusting too much in the feeling of being right is not a reliable guide to what’s actually going on in the external world. Below is Kathryn Schulz’s discussion on being wrong.
- What lessons have you learned from past mistakes? Share with us in the comments below!
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As always, desire to inspire!
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