How to Respond to Failure

by Rachel Miller

August 2, 2022

ABOVE : Anthony Tran

When you make a mistake or mess up, it sucks. It’s easy to be angry with yourself. You know you can do better.

Consider:

  • Things don’t always go according to plan. No one acts with the intent to be wrong. You made a decision, and it didn’t work out. You acted with the right intention, but it ultimately was ineffective. Failure is not a “bad” thing, but it’s necessary to make progress and get better.

  • The “wrong” decisions and the mess-ups are just as essential, if not more, than the right choices. The wrong choices allow us to pause, recalibrate and refine our approach. It gives us information of what not to do and what doesn’t work so that we can choose a better action next time.

  • The key is not to judge yourself but to be open. You can only learn when you feel safe and accepted to do so. Accept the undesired outcome and allow yourself to reflect on your actions without judging them as “good” or “bad.” Get curious! What worked? What didn’t work? Use this as your small opportunity to recalibrate and refine so you can achieve a better outcome next time.

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