The road to success can be a very difficult and arduous task. As a young professional, you will face a variety of different obstacles. But the one biggest obstacle that we all face in life is failure.
While failure itself has a negative stigma associated with it, the concept and overall idea provides great lessons and insights about ourselves. Many people have even gone as far as to say that failure is the great teacher. While true in a way, accepting the concept of failure is harder than that it seems. Why? The problem is that failure is not just cryptic in its nature, but also it is downright damaging. Trying to figure out its lessons is no easy task, especially when you are nursing a bruised ego and are trying to move beyond the frustration, disappointment, and demoralization of the situation. For some people, it takes a few weeks. For others, it takes almost a year. But as much as you can refer to those moments with resentment and hopelessness, it is imperative that you, as an individual, accept them as they are if you want to grow both personally and professionally and move on to greater things.
Now to do this, you need to see these disappointing moments as windows of opportunity. As difficult as it may be, framing these incidences in this manner will allow you to learn and uncover those hidden teachable moments so that you can not just move on, but also grow in a bigger and better way. To help you deduce what exactly those lessons are and how they can help improve your chances of future success, I have provided various guidelines so that you can understand, plan, evaluate, and execute later on down the road.
To being, think back and reflect on those moments. Ask yourself those overarching questions of what happened and why did the result end the way it did. By challenging yourself with those hard-to-ask questions, you will be able to dive deeper into the minuscule flaws that you could have refined to help rectify the situation. Now, this is by no means a way for you to regret anything that you have done. What was done is in the past. The only thing you can do now is to learn from those mistakes and move forward. If there is a way where you can change your style of work or change your style of thinking, do that. If not, try thinking of other alternative routes that can help you get to your end goal.
Once you have self-evaluated and reflected on your goals, it is now time for you to reevaluate your planning and preparation for the next step. For some people, this is just the next project. For others, this is for their next job. Whatever is the case, make sure you spend your planning on the basis of your personal and professional goals. If the task and or job was similar to that specific moment of failure, try and strategizing of various ways of how you can avoid those similar mistakes. Remember, learning to anticipate for hurdles and problems will be your biggest asset starting anew. In the grand scheme of things, a vast majority of people spend a little time planning and deciphering these moments and continue to run into the same obstacles and unexpected circumstances. To prevent that from happening to you, utilize what you know and leverage it to your benefit.
After strong and strategic planning, try and focus on variables in your own control. During the early stages after a failure, you can often feel very passive and helpless going into a variety of situations. That fire that was once there seems to be only a flicker of light that may or may not be extinguished. While the dark times can be suffocating, do not allow that perceptual distortion to push you out of your locus of control. Instead, leverage what you know. Much of this goes back to the strategic thinking and self-reflecting portion of this blog, but to start executing specific objectives will give you the confidence necessary for controlling your failure and putting you back on the path of success.
Keep this in mind; failure is a part of life. If you don’t fail, you don’t learn. If you don’t learn, you will never change. See these moments as not the opposite of success but as a part of your growth and success in the future.