Failure is, unfortunately, one of life’s inevitabilities. Everyone encounters them, some more than others and some bigger than others. Yes, they can hurt, whether it be emotionally, physically, or financially. What a lot of people don’t realize is that they can also help. In fact, they have the potential to fuel your path to success.
At the very least, failure is experience, which is vital to personal and professional growth. Having the knowledge of the good and bad aspects of your failure is something you can use for self-development and for the future challenges you may face. Failure is the ultimate opportunity to learn. Reflecting on failure allows you to figure out your strengths and weaknesses. Understanding this will help you in future endeavors, professional or personal. Ultimately, failure is a stepping stone for everybody. The experience and knowledge you gain can be utilized to build success for you and those around you. Failure builds resilience, keeps your ego in check, helps you let go of the past, and it also helps you realize that everything is temporary. A failure is a speed bump in your life. You may not like it, but you will get through it eventually.
Let’s look at some of the most important, successful, and powerful figures in today’s world. Bill Gates saw his first company crumble and Steve Jobs was kicked out of Apple, a company he created. We all know how this turned out. Gates founded a new company called Microsoft that became an enormous success and Jobs created NeXT, a company that was soon acquired by Apple, and he worked his way back into his executive job. Oprah Winfrey was removed from her co-anchor position at a local Nashville news station for being unfit for television. She later took over a local station in Chicago that eventually turned into The Oprah Winfrey Show, which ran for 25 seasons. Lastly, a teenage Michael Jordan, struggled on his high school basketball team and was eventually cut from the roster. Now he is regarded as one of the best players to ever touch a basketball in history. All of these individuals saw their failures as a way to get better and used it to do so, which created a mighty path of success.
Failure is tough. There is no doubt about it. However, it can yield success if you look at and use it the right way. Analyze, recognize and learn from your failures and implement the wisdom and experience you’ve gained on your path to success. I leave you with a quote from the late, great Maya Angelou.
"You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it."