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Source: Stocksnap. Credit: Markus Spiske
I was at a gymnastics class for adults where the coach grabbed a thick mat and asked us to do the handstand and fall. To me, it appeared that he was asking us to… fail intentionally! Nothing could be more fun. No judgment, expectations or focus required. We did it once, twice, then he hammered us with instructions on how to fall and I felt I performed the worse among others. You can say that I failed to fail and that was disappointing. Then it got me wondering on a bigger scale: is there actually a right way to fail? Luckily, I was reading ‘How Successful People Win’ by John C. Maxwell who shared simple yet clever insights on how we make losses greater. From unfulfilled dreams, setbacks to failures, these are inevitable and here is a recipe to make them even worse!
By/ Manal Saad
That’s one of the best 2 options, the other one is not dealing with our loss immediately or to deal with it the wrong way. Time can magnify your loss especially if it piles up and left untouched. So, don’t tap into dealing with your losses right away because the sum can lead to insecurity. Luckily, we have a shortcut for you in point no.2.
2. Let your self-esteem take a beating
Yes! What could be better to beat yourself over than a loss? As Author and Speaker, Les Brown says “The good time we put in our pocket. The bad time we put in our heart.” When failure happens, let it pierce through your heart and thoughts, so you can stay in a stuck emotional and mental state of mind.
3. Compare your worst to people’s best. It’s totally fair!
Here is how you can create a negative cycle of self-talk either by comparing your best to someone else’s worst or comparing your worst to someone else’s best. We all do it sometimes, but if you think it’s OK to keep doing it, congrats, you’ve just found a way to make your life worse. Also, the great news is that you can always find someone better than you.
4. After a fresh loss, fall in one of these traps
If a loss didn’t make you feel bad already, here are some traps that Maxwell mentioned in his book, take a dip!
The Fatigue Trap: “I am tired today”, losses wear us out
The Comparison Trap: “Someone else is better qualified than I am”, losses cause us to feel inferior to others
The Timing Trap: “This isn’t the right time”, losses make us hesitate
The Expectation Trap: “I thought it would be easy, but it isn’t”, losses highlight difficulties
The Rationalization Trap: “Maybe it’s really not that important”, losses allow us to lose perspective. It is easy to fail and then abandon the whole idea.
The Public Opinion Trap: “If I fail, what will others think?”, losses paralyze us.
5. Don’t take an action! Actions are for confident people
If you got no.2 right, by this point your confidence will be at an all-time low and you don’t need to worry about this, because the more people are confident, the more likely they are willing to move from knowing to acting, to cut the chase and think what is ought to be done here.
Oh, and don’t forget to arm yourself with a whole bunch of excuses because “It’s easier to go from failure to success than it is from excuses to success”, as Maxwell wrote.
Losses are painful, personal and annoying. Although pain is inevitable, misery is a choice. By unfollowing these 5 points I mentioned, you won’t feel great when you fail, you will feel bad and hurt, but you will be able to move forward, learn and make each loss your last otherwise life will keep reminding you of the same lesson. Why? Because failure and losses change us and as Maxwell thinks, experience alone can’t change unless it’s taught.
The only fall you should take is falling out of these traps and moving forward.
Remember what Benjamin Franklin wrote, “Those things that hurt, instruct.”