“If you learn from defeat, you haven’t really lost.” – Zig Ziglar
They have taught us that “Aim for success. Work hard. Failure is not an option.”
Then the question comes, “What if I fail. What if I’m facing a major setback? Does that mean I have lost it?”
That is not it.
This is where we have to reboot our thoughts a little. We have to see why we failed and what’s there to learn from it.
Instead, if we either think ‘failure is the doom’ or ‘sit and worry about it,’ that is when we will have many things to lose.
Failure is a part of life. Same way, learning from your failures is also an integral part of your success.
Don’t ignore your failures. Or, don’t exercise too much control that “I want to succeed. I need to win. Failure is not an option”, okay!
You will find your way to success only through failures.
We have shared with you 12 important strategies for learning from failures in life.
What we shared here are practical and helpful strategies for you. You can use them to ease your process of accepting, interpreting, and learning from any failures in life.
12 Important Strategies for Learning from Failures:
1. Find the energy that builds you back
‘Your’ energy is something that will help you rebuild from where everything fell apart.
That energy will give you peace of mind, lift your spirits, helps you face reality, teaches life, and makes you get back on your feet again.
Family, relationships, soul-searching trips, physical fitness, pursuing hobbies, spending time with people you like, leaning towards any spiritual path, looking for a mentor, spending quality time with your best friends, solo trips, mini-vacation, etc. are a few to name here. These are positive energies and activities that will help you a lot.
Find what makes you happy.
Find what can bring your energy back.
Pursue it. Hold on to it. This is the foremost strategy for learning from any failure in life.
2. Don’t Decide Anything Now
Negative emotions cloud your judgments.
Emotions coming out of failures and embarrassments will be so strong that it can quickly erode all your positive spirit.
Thinking rationally will become difficult.
And, it is hard to make things work underneath all that demotivating emotions.
If you are dealing with any setback or failure, decide nothing. Judge nothing. Don’t go into a self-criticizing mode. Conclude nothing now.
This is a thumb rule in learning from your failure.
3. Be Clear
Clarity is an effective strategy for learning from failures.
Clarity doesn’t mean you need to have meticulous planning, a fool-proof execution, a perfect system, and such, okay!
Just be clear in what you want, what to do, how to do, where you want to take things further, where you want to reach, how to make your goal work, and all things.
In this way, even if you fail, you will know exactly where things went wrong and where to repair them.
To put it simply,
You can figure all things out on your journey. But first, you need to be clear about where you want to go.
4. Stop the Blame Game
Quickly, we try to put up a blame-game show to handle our failures.
It will do us no good.
Blaming or finger-pointing does no good in solving a problem or handling a failure. It only makes things worse and deviates us from what is important.
Try to handle your failures blamelessly. It will give you a positive vigor, forwardness, and a positive initiation in resolving your problems.
It’s another effective strategy to learn from failure.
5. Try to have a positive outlook
“The people who succeed… they’re the ones who learn how to respond to failure with optimism.” - Relentless Optimism, Darrin Donnelly.
We get it. Failures hurt.
But, what hurts, even more is staying in the same failure-phase and not taking any efforts to move forward.
Heal your way through failures to reach success. Respond to failure with optimism.
This is a practical strategy we all need in life to learn from failure.
6. Have a Plan “B”
Just in case things go south, any kind of backup plan will come in handy to you.
Saving money, generating a second income, securing your finances, a contingency plan for your businesses, etc. are few backup plans that everyone has in our lives, is it?
So, is this enough? Securing all our physical perspectives?
No, that’s not it!
Deciding to remove yourself from situations, places, and surroundings that put you through failure is a backup plan.
Taking some time off from what you are doing and regaining your mind and body is a form of a backup plan.
Backup plans can be in different forms and different means.
A backup plan doesn’t mean “I am thinking about failing now itself.” Think of them as a little support system for you.
7. You need a healthy space
Here, For instance:
If you are running a business, create a space where people working for you feel safe and comfortable admitting to or reporting failures.
Only then, you can restructure and repair any failures healthily.
Instead, if people working for you feel threatened or discouraged towards reporting mistakes, hindrances, or failures, think of the damage it can cause.
This principle applies to all walks of life like families, health, relationships, work, etc.
Failure is inevitable. What we need is a healthy space that will comfort us and not discourage us when we fail.
This is another best strategy you need for learning from failure.
8. Find the “Teachable Moments”
In failures, successful people say, “find the teachable moments.”
So what does that mean? How to find out those teachable moments from failures?
Here’s an example.
Until then, everything will look easy, positive, carefree, truthful, and easy for us.
Only when we fail, when our plans didn’t work out, when we face embarrassments, insults, loss, or backstabs in life, we will come to the genuine sense of what life is. Is it?
We all have experienced it, right?
That reality will make you realize who you are, what you want, how to drive your life, whom to trust, how to move further, what is wrong, what is right, and everything.
That reality ‘can alter the course of action’ in your business, jobs, and in all facets of life.
Realizing ‘life’ and ‘people’ is the best ‘teachable moments’ that failures will give us all. So learn it.
9. Do it Right the next time
Once you identify what pulled you down, move away from those reasons ASAP. No matter how good it seems, move away.
If you stay there, it will pull you to repeat the same mistake.
It’s okay that you failed. You learned a lesson. You will now see what works and what don’t.
Keep those failures lessons in your thoughts.
The next time, ‘Do it right.’ Don’t repeat past mistakes.
10. Take a Break. Regroup yourself.
“Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes… including you.” – Anne LaMotte
“Pause everything” for a while.
Resume when you know your mind and body regrouped and realigned positively.
Resume when you know that you can handle what’s in front of you. Until then, it’s good to take a break!
Go for a small vacation. Or, give yourself long breaks than the usual in the middle of your work.
It’s alright if you break down.
Cry—sleep long hours. Buy things you like. Try new things.
In dealing with failures in life, the first and the best thing you can do are to take care of your physical and mental self. It’s an effective, practical, and best coping strategy to learn from failures in life.
11. You cannot control all the variables.
Exercising control over everything, expecting everything ‘to go your way’ is not a workable strategy for life, work, business, or anything.
Not everything will go your way. Not everyone will climb your boat. It’s all okay too.
The point here is, stop expecting and stop controlling everything around you. Let it go sometimes.
Wait to let things take their turn.
You can only control your actions and not the outcomes every time.
12. Do a Failure Analysis
After settling yourself, get back to some serious work by doing failure analysis.
Nine things are important here. They are:
► Bring the courage to accept that “I have failed. I can get back. It’s alright. It doesn’t define who I am or what I am capable of”.
► Being in denial and unwilling to accept failures may feed your ego. But it does no good in recovering from failures in life. Remember this.
► Be open enough to listen to what people around you have to say about the failures you just faced.
► Try to be more rational. Try to distance yourself from overwhelming negative emotions.
► Ignore the discouragements and ‘I told you this will not work’ arguments after your failures.
► Put your personal feelings aside and then think.
► Go back to your planning, preparation, and execution phase. See if you can find out where things went wrong.
► Re-test everything.
► Re-Strategize your plans.
Consider these nine practices before you sit and evaluate your failures.
We hope that these 12 important strategies for learning from failures will be helpful to you. Even in a minuscule, if what we shared made you think, it’s a win for us.