Like many people I am a bit of a perfectionist and my son inherited the dubious trait. It has been a challenge over the years to support him through the learning process when he failed more often than he succeeded at something new. Learning to read, draw, ride a bike, and swim were all a challenge. He would stumble on new words or fall over instead of balance and tell me, "Mom, I can't do it!" with defeat in his voice. As his mom I knew he could do it, that he was just learning, that he was holding himself to a unfair standard. I would coach him through it, reminding him that everyone has to learn and that success was just around the corner. I was always right because this is the process of learning a new skill. Try, fail, fail, fail, small success, fail, fail, medium success, etc .
Children can teach us a lot about failure.
Have you ever watched a child learn to walk? Do they just decide to walk, get going, and walk perfectly the first time? Nope. They take a step and fall on their tushy. Thank goodness for diapers!
Keep in mind that the baby didn't start there. First she learned to roll over, then to hold herself up on hands and knees, to crawl, to pull up and stand, to cruise holding onto something, to take the first step unaided, and to take the second step. All along failing and trying again, and again, and again. Until one day she takes a step, then another, and she's walking.
Failure is part of learning a new skill and stretching your abilities to find how far you can go.
Failure is learning.
Failure is bravery.
Failure is perseverance.
Failure is the first step to succeeding.
If you're not failing sometimes then you're not challenging yourself to become the very best you are capable of. Whether it is starting the business you have always dreamed of or meeting the love of your life, failure will be part of the process of succeeding. Learning to look at failure as the learning opportunity that it is rather than as a reason to quit is the difference between people who succeed and those who don't.
Success isn't an absence of failure, it is learning from it and trying again.