I think it’s safe to say that we’re conditioned to fear the act of failing. Whether academically, professionally or romantically, failure is most often positioned as the worst possible outcome, or even as a kind of betrayal of trust (“I thought you could do this; I thought you would do this better”). Of course we all have expectations and experience disappointment when things don’t play out as anticipated. It’s human nature. Yet we have the refreshing opportunity to reframe any “failure” as a momentous occasion, one to be celebrated!
If you’re wondering how and why, stick with me. First, let’s be clear about what reframing is. In this context, it means to look at or think of something in a new or different way. When something didn’t pan out as expected, I can remember feeling, honestly, a little embarrassed. Thankfully, I was able to remind myself that I was better for having gone through the experience if I could learn from it, and this painful memory started to become empowering. Step into your power! Before the lessons can be learned, we have to be able to acknowledge and accept the opportunity to be taught.
If we're always avoiding things that are uncomfortable, we are robbing ourselves of the opportunity to grow and evolve, and this is our primary responsibility in life. So, why does celebrating our L’s really work? I think Trepoint founder and CEO Bill Carmody summed it up best when he said, “Celebrating your wins not only feels great physically, but it reinforces the behavior you want to [have] show up when you face a new challenge or opportunity.”
Ask yourself, where can you go out of your way to seek failure? To push the boundaries?
How can you experiment with your own limits of ability? Where are you playing it safe and what would it look like to do the things that scare you?
The journey is all about trying to stay present with the discomfort, responding in a way that is aligned, and of course bouncing back to your highest self as swiftly as possible.
Failure is the fastest way to grow and tap into your own genius. It’s the key.