How failing forward helps us learn faster, live better, & kick butt!
Sometimes we take a step forward, even if we are scared or pushing ourselves, and we aren’t as successful as we think we should be or should have been. If you’re anything like me you probably dwell on that misstep, that failure, and think to yourself “I’m done with this! I can’t do it!” cause you’re all soured on the situation. Well it’s time to stop drinking that haterade and stop feeding yourself those hater-tots (see what I did there? Huh? Huh?) cause you can change how you see failure. If I can do it, you can too!
Something I learned a long time ago from a mentor of mine was that he was a professional at his specific set of skills because he failed a lot more than I had. He advised me that I was just like anyone else; I just hadn’t failed enough, and got up enough to try again, like my heroes (who were mostly musicians) had. That is when I heard the phrase “Fail Forward”. This phrase was coined by author John Maxwell and as important a man as he is (for real, he knows what’s up!), I didn’t care then. I cared that I finally understood what my mentor was talking about all those years before I heard this phrase.
This phrase made me realize that in order to learn I had to screw up sometimes. I learned to ride a bike by falling off, wrecking, skinning the crap outta my knees, elbows, and forehead (yeah seriously, not cool) but I got back on to ride again, to ride better! I had successfully failed forward years before I knew what I was doing. Chances are you did too! Heck, we are awesome at it without even realizing! How cool is that?
Somehow I had failed to learn that I was gaining knowledge from each misstep (lots of failed relationships even more failed businesses) I took. The lessons in failure are the tools I needed to live a successful life. Looking back I realized that, in learning the other tools of empowerment and success, I had failed from time to time there too. When trying to vulnerable I would maybe reveal a little too much to someone who was a bit untrustworthy, that stung, but I learned what to look for in trustworthy people. I took chances on myself, sometimes biting off a bit more than I could chew or thinking I was super B.A. when really I was just sorta B.A. which would cause me to come up short.
What I realized is that I hadn’t come up short on any of those situations, I just had to learn the lessons I needed to be successful and try again to come up where I intended in the first place! I had to get back on the bike and ride again cause all those cuts & bruises reminded me that I didn’t wanna wreck quite as much as I wanted to succeed! Fact is I still fail often but I am glad to do it because I learn more and I learn fast because of all the practice! It can still be frustrating but with each failure I am one lesson closer to being a professional at what I wanna be a pro at. The best thing about it is that I am here to help you get back up when you fail, to remind you to learn the lesson and try again even on days you don’t believe you can because I believe, wait, I KNOW you can…just like me, like my mentor, and just like all my heroes.
If you're looking for an additional daily confidence booster check out Joshua Coburn's classic Inspiration on Demand for daily quotes to help you achieve a happy and successful life.