Reflecting On Failure

Failure sucks!

But it is not death.

Until one sees it that way.

It is not something to be celebrated either.

Then what to do about failure?

Not need to dwell on it. Reflect, learn and move on.

Reflecting on failure helps us learn what caused failure. 

There can be many reasons for failure but some common ones are:

  1. Lack of planning or execution.
  2. Not having what it takes to succeed, or maybe the field one chose is not right. This is a harsh realization but it may be true in some cases. To arrive at second realization is not easy because it can affect our self-worth.

If the reason for failure is lack of planning and execution then we should try again. I did it with my sleep early experiment. I failed at it at first attempt. When I reflected on it, I realized that I did not plan well and didn’t commit to doing it. I tried again this month, planned better and was able to sleep early 12 nights out of 31. I call it a passing score and hope to do better going forward. We’ll see.

Another time, I wanted to learn western vocals. I enrolled myself into a good training institute and started with my first lesson. But I hated it. I could not pull myself to go back again. So despite depositing advance, I chose not to go. I figured that western vocals and I are not made for each other. It hurt my ego and shattered my singing dreams but I had to cut my losses and move on.

In the case of entrepreneurial failure, the reasons can be external too. This is not a post about ‘how to avoid failure’ but I’d say capping risk and putting a conservative percentage (less than 50%) of the available capital in play, should help one last through such times.

Have you failed at some point in life? What did you do to get out of it?