Re-framing Failure

We all have experienced failure; trying something that didn’t succeed, making mistakes, not trying hard enough. In the aftermath of realizing that we have made a mistake, or have failed ourselves or others in some way, our internal dialogue can often perpetuate the cycle of failure by reinforcing our insecurities and shameful feelings. We are much better served to view failure as a necessary part of our learned experience – reframing failure in the context of our internal dialogue as well:

  • “What did I learn from this experience? What can I do differently next time?”
  • “Failing has the ability to grow resiliency. I will not let myself be deterred from my goals.”
  • “What has this taught me about myself? How can I choose to react differently?
  • “Do I need to ask for help? What guidance do I need to reach my goals?”
  • “This is only a temporary setback. In the big picture, failures add up to success.”
  • “This is a tough feeling but that’s okay. I can be uncomfortable and still move forward.”

Probably one of the most positive outcomes that comes from the process of failing is that it has the potential to create within ourselves a healthier ego. If we choose to learn from our mistakes and reframe our failures, we move from an ego that wants to be right to an ego that is more grounded in the experience.

After all, “When we give ourselves permission to fail, we, at the same time, give ourselves permission to excel.” – Eloise Ristad

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