Episode 353: Show Notes
Today on the podcast we have a Boss Talk about a topic that’s been on our minds a lot lately, probably because we’ve been going through all these transitions. So today we discuss what failure is to each of us and how it makes us feel. We felt that it was really important to open up this conversation because there’s a lot of shame that can come with failure, and that makes us not want to talk about it! But sharing ideas around this topic will hopefully build even stronger support in our community as it is something that all of us have gone through at some point in our lives.
As cliché as it sounds, failure is always an opportunity to learn – even though this is not what we want to hear when it happens to us. It’s true though, failure gives us another opportunity to try again and brings us one step closer to that thing that we’re supposed to be doing and that feels good! Don’t miss out on this episode and join in the conversation by sending us a DM on Instagram!
What Failure Means to Each of Us
For Emylee, an enneagram type 3, failure is not something she believes in, so she’s always advocating that it’s impossible to fail at anything because you learn something from it, and therefore you gain. That is not to say that she doesn’t feel the sting of disappointment when things don’t turn out like she expected, but she chooses to see it not as failure, but rather that there’s something missing in the formula. For Abagail, failure is the act of giving up. But there are positive ways to give up that aren’t failure and negative ways to give up, which are failure. The truth is though that no one else can decide for you what failure looks like, it’s a very personal experience and depends on the story you tell yourself about it.
Why Giving Up Does Not Always Equate to Failure in Business
In business, some people refuse to give up a strategy or marketing channel believing that they have to push through despite all the resistance and unsuccessful attempts, but that’s not necessarily true. You need to look at it holistically and ask yourself whether it really is serving you. Perhaps it’s a great learning opportunity that will help you to readjust your focus. Abagail’s husband recently gave up his job to pursue his own business, and in these early days he is experiencing all the emotions that go along with taking massive risks and constantly assessing what failure looks like. Some people carry on and on and refuse to let something go and admit that it’s not working, and this can waste a lot of time which they could have used to start up the thing that is going to work and feel good. It’s almost necessary to fail before success can come, and therefore you should welcome it!
The Opposite of Failure is Not a One Size Fits All
What is a happy reality for one person might be a failure for another. Put differently, the definition of success is different for all of us. You might think that someone failed but they perceive what they’ve achieved to be a success. There is no clear-cut definition of what that looks like. Your reality is defined by your own perspective, always, and therefore your success and your failure is your own.
A Better Perspective on Failure
For some of us, failure hurts, we have to admit that. It hurts deeply because it makes us feel inadequate. But instead of seeing failures as wounds, looking at them as scars are much more empowering, viewing them as representative of what you’ve overcome and lived through. While we’re not necessarily saying that everything happens for a reason, it is very possible for that every failure to have allowed you to be where you are today. Some people can’t seem to get over poor decisions and failures in their past, and they are constantly blaming these events for everything that goes wrong in their lives. This is a destructive narrative. The problem with the “everything happens for a reason” philosophy, however, is that it assumes that we are not in control of what happens to us. We choose a path every day and these decisions have certain consequences that are unavoidable.
When Failure Makes Us Angry
Sometimes we get frustrated when things don’t work out, and want to throw a tantrum about it. Even though feeling frustrated with failure is okay, we can’t as adults go around behaving badly because we’re hurt and disappointed. The emotions that go along with that are real, but we should learn to deal with them constructively. We want to hear what failure means to all of you. Please DM us on Instagram and tells us what it means to you and makes you feel like. Let’s open up this conversation so we can better support one another!
What failure means to each of us. [0:02:01.3]
Why giving up does not always equate to failure in business. [0:04:24.7]
The opposite of failure is not a one size fits all. [0:08:02.4]
A better perspective on failure. [0:10:00.2]
When failure makes us angry. [0:20:05.8]
And much more!