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Failure is the Mother of Success

When taking on a new project, the first hurdle to overcome is the mental obstacle that you could end up failing. It's the thing that stops us from plunging into the unknown. But it is important to remember that although taking risks does come with a chance of failure, it also comes with a chance of success. And which is more likely depends on a variety of factors, the biggest one being mindset. If we view our failures as an opportunity for growth and learning as opposed to a reason to quit, then our chances of success increase exponentially.

Did you know? Thomas Edison tried thousands of light bulbs before discovering his life-altering solution. Babe Ruth hit 714 home runs but retired as baseball's strikeout leader. KFC founder Colonel Harland Sanders was 65 when he began franchising his approach to fried chicken. He was rejected more than 1,000 times. Howard Schultz approached 242 investors with the idea of a chain of coffee shops. Nearly 220 of them refused the Starbucks concept.

How many of the best ideas of the century would have never gotten off the ground if their creators gave up at the first sign of failure? Most likely not very many of them. And while it's important to recognize failures as just one of the necessary steppingstones towards success, failures need to be more than that. They also need to be seen as opportunities to learn and improve.

"The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results."-Albert Einstein

Mindset also comes into play when you understand that many people who are able to achieve success have the self-discipline necessary to be persistent, to get up over and over again after being knocked down. Whether you're facing a physical or mental opponent, you'll need the ability to motivate yourself to keep going. If this is something that is difficult for you to achieve on your own, surrounding yourself with coaches, mentors, friends, and resources like books and talks by people who have been in your shoes and come out on the other side.

“If water makes a hole in rock, with a single steady drop, then we can move worlds with persistence.”. ― Ari Gunzburg.

In summary, a good checklist to practice when faced with a failure is:

  • First, recognize that although you are experiencing failure, you are not a failure, and make the decision to try again.

  • Secondly, examine what it was exactly about the original project or idea that could be flawed or use improvements, and make adjustments.

  • Thirdly, practice persistence, persistence, persistence.

With this formula, you can turn your failure into a success no matter what obstacles you face! So what are you waiting for? Tackle that project! You've got this.

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