4 Powerful Approaches to Turn Failure into Success
Our life can take unexpected turns for the worst. One day you are a success and the next a failure. Things seem to be going well and then, abruptly they aren’t. You expected the promotion and then didn’t get it. The customer promised a big order and then it didn’t happen. A new boss changes everything, and your job isn’t fun anymore. Your company’s sales dip and you get laid off from a good job. Then your self doubts begin to chant, and inwardly you are asking, “What did I do wrong? Why me?”
Success Becomes Failure
Early one spring I took my two boys fishing. My youngest son, Brendan, was especially excited. He had received a new fishing rod for Christmas and all winter long he kept asking when we were going to go fishing. Finally, the big day arrived after the ice thawed. As we drove to the Mill Pond, he jumped up and down in the back seat. He kept repeating, “We are going FISHING!” After we parked, Brendan bolted out of the car and slid down the bank to the water. He said, “Dad, can I cast now?” I replied, “Go for it.” He drew back his rod and cast with all of his might–but he forgot to hold tight. The rod flew thirty feet out into the lake with his line. In a split second, his excitement turned to tears.
Have you had a day or month or year like that recently? Are you faced with financial concerns or family worries? Is your mind filled with thoughts related to problems, anxiety and a lack of self-confidence? Tough times can happen to anybody. If you don’t watch out they can become the norm, and you will get stuck in a rut. Negative attitudes about life and the circumstances that go with them can prevail. If they do, it is to your peril. Soon your problems will become impassable mountains. BUT there is hope! What you need are some tools to exterminate the negative attitudes so you can deal with your challenges constructively.
4 Powerful Methods to Deal with Failure
To begin, heed these words by George Bernard Shaw: “People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I don’t believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and, if they can’t find them, make them.” You see, success is not in the situation but the state of being. Sundar Pichal said, “Where your failure as a badge of honor.” Here are four dynamic approaches to help you do that. And, at the same time sustain a positive and optimistic outlook on life even in the dark times.
Do one more
Always make the extra effort, to “do one more” than expected in your job or for others. Famed football coach George Allen coined this phrase for how he built winning team after winning team. He explained that he always worked his teams to go the extra mile in preparing to win so that during the game, under pressure, it happened naturally. By doing this, not only will you feel better, but others will recognize you for your efforts. Don’t stew over your hardship and slough off–ramp it up. It will strengthen your character. Who you are and why you are here is greater than your pain. This will fuel forward momentum, and your own internal motivation to succeed again.
Begin learning again to renew your mind. Get updated on any new technology and products. Take seminars and read uplifting books. Studies show that people who continue their education end up making more money and enjoy more career success than those who don’t do this. Steven Covey says in his book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, that winners keep sharpening the saw. You are no better as a parent, salesperson, manager or employee than what you learned yesterday.
Then, positively review your setback, and honestly seek what you can gain. What worked? Where can you improve? How can you be better next time?) Continuous learning gives you renewed perspective on your capabilities and provides you a competitive edge for your next challenge. Now you can reframe the failure as courage.
Yes, work hard! But also enjoy your family, friends or hobbies, especially now. Reconnect with others. What you do off the job affects what you do on the job and vice versa. Relate life balance to the spinning tops that children play with. By pushing on the lever consistently the top spins faster. If you really get the top going it may even play music. However, if you bump the top while it spins it will wobble and crash. Consider a well-rounded focus in life about these areas: family, health, spiritual needs, education, recreation and career. A problem in one of these areas won’t derail you when your support base is balanced and stable. Lean on this balance and remember what’s most important.
Get into action
The great end to life is not knowledge but action. Action rules. Often depression is caused because of inactivity or else the constant re-run of our mistakes. Positive action inspires the soul to reach new heights. Take a risk, write the report, call the customer, meet with your employees, brainstorm new ideas or set new goals. The effort to do this gives you momentum to turn your problems into a possibility. Life is no dress rehearsal–ACT, and do it now!
Dr. Evan O’Neil Kane of Kane Summit Hospital in New York had plenty to be negative about nine decades ago. As a doctor, like other doctors of his day, he lost many patients in appendectomy surgery. Many died due the effects of general anesthesia. He felt local anesthesia would be better. At the time it wasn’t accepted medical practice so he didn’t have volunteers to test his hypothesis.
So he took massive action. On February 15th, 1921, he performed appendectomy surgery with local anesthesia on himself. The results were so positive that he was out of the hospital in few days. He changed medical practice forever.
The Bottom-Line Turning Failure into Success
At times, all of us need to do self-surgery on our minds. Not that the failure we face isn’t difficult. Too often we become our own worst enemy by adding kindling to the fire by beating up ourselves through incessant negative self-talk. To prevent problems from overwhelming us we need constructive actions that can turn our circumstances and perspective around for the better, as described above.
Author James Allen declared, “Every man (or woman) is where he is by the law of being; his thoughts which he had built his character and have brought him there.” That is how we precisely engineer our next level of success and discover the true greatness within us.
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