Stop running from your failures…

Stop running from your failures…

I like to fancy myself one of the better failures within my network. If that doesn’t sound like a humble brag, then this post is for you. My ability and willingness to fail has been a true blessing in my life and a characteristic I consider to be integral to my success. Failure is to be celebrated. It’s the only tangible, measurable proof of growth there is. And yet, most of us shy away from it, avoiding the pain of failure at all costs.

It’s a weird dynamic, this relationship we have with failure. We love stories about it. No one likes a movie where the main character succeeds unchecked. We like the struggle, the adversity. It inspires us, reminds us of what’s possible. But that’s when someone else is the subject. That’s when someone else is going through it. When it comes to our lives, every failure makes us question how much we really value the outcome. How much do we really want to succeed?

Tony Robbins laid it out pretty clearly in his first book, Unlimited Power. Everything we do, we do in an effort to either seek pleasure or avoid pain. And we’ll always do more to avoid pain. So, it stands to reason that if we’re not willing to go through the setbacks, the failure, that we’re not really as committed to our goals as we think. But it’s more complicated than that. What really makes the difference in our tolerance for struggle is our relationship with it.

It’s easy to give up when the failure is painful. And it’s perfectly logical. The feeling of defeat, or worse, the feeling that you’re working hard with no progress to show for it, can make you rethink everything that you consider important. But what if the failure didn’t hurt. What if you didn’t consider failure painful, or better yet, what if it gave you pleasure? Would you view your struggles differently if they didn’t bring you pain?

The truth is, failure is only painful because we allow it to be, and it’s our egos that make it so. We don’t avoid failure because it’s painful in a vacuum. It’s painful because we care about being judged. We care about how we’re perceived by others. We’re even likely uncomfortable with our ability to look objectively at ourselves without judgement. After all, we’re our own biggest critics. That’s where the pain comes from. Failure is painful because we’re conditioned throughout life to see it as bad, as something to avoid rather than learn from.

This idea is inherently counterproductive. And the reality is that it’s what keeps the majority of people from ever realizing the vision they have for their lives. We’re taught from an early age, all the way through school that failure, risk taking, doing things any other way that the system encourages is bad. Then we grow up to become working bees, afraid of ever challenging the status quo because we fear what the other worker bees, who grew up learning the same lessons, will think of our attempt to break the mold. It’s the definition of insanity.

That ego, that reluctance we have to do anything that has a chance of exposing us as being anything but completely together, is poison to our efforts to live our best lives. The fact of the matter is that we are nothing more than space dust, hurtling through the universe at probably like a trillion miles an hour. No amount of failure or judgement or discomfort will change that. There is nothing to be lost in failure, only gained, through growth, maturation and experience. Learn to embrace it as a method of advancement and your journey will become exponentially more fruitful.

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Subscribe

Get weekly, actionable advice, hacks and best practices for overall awesomeness!

More articles from Brian:

Advice
Brian Force

Stop running from your failures…

It’s a weird dynamic, this relationship we have with failure. We love stories about it. No one likes a movie where the main character succeeds unchecked. We like the struggle, the adversity. It inspires us, reminds us of what’s possible. But that’s when someone else is the subject. That’s when someone else is going through it. When it comes to our lives, every failure makes us question how much we really value the outcome. How much do we really want to succeed?

Read More »
Advice
Brian Force

If you know you can do it, you won’t.

The fact is, just about everyone desires to be in better shape, to be healthier in some way, and knows, with at least some certainty, the steps they need to take to accomplish their goals. Lack of education isn’t why we fail. But it’s also not because we set our sights too high. Most of us just want to look good in the mirror, that’s a completely realistic goal. If anything, we give up because we know we can do it.

Read More »
Advice
Brian Force

Here’s why you never have enough time…

It’s fundamentally difficult, with so much distraction and opportunity, to find the time to get it all in every day. To truly be productive and not just busy. So, what’s the solution? How do we get back to a place where we’re not constantly being pulled in a million different directions? Where the day doesn’t waste away behind the steady flow of new and completely irrelevant stimulants being thrown at us non-stop? The answer is simple addition by subtraction.

Read More »
Advice
Brian Force

Why You’re Not As Productive As You Should Be (And How To Change That)

It’s understandable, in a world increasingly full of distraction, that it takes a near herculean effort to put our best foot forward in that department, but that doesn’t make the threat of wasted time any less real.

And while the battle for time efficiency may never cease entirely, there are plenty of safeguards we can implement to systematize our efforts.

Here are a few simple, practical ways to up your productivity and stave off waste.

Read More »