Failures are insanely important in life. If you haven’t failed at something, you’re missing out.
Failures are indicators and if you know how to properly interpret them instead of throwing your hands up and wailing to the gods in search of answers as to why you’re so failure-prone, you can without a doubt begin living a significantly better life.
Because we all want to live better. And failures show us how.
1. Welcome failures because you figured out how not to do something.
If you’re confident in yourself, meaning failures don’t equate to endless negative chatter about how you’re no good, you’re not talented enough, or gifted, or smart — if you can ignore any BS talk like that, then failures are your friends.
When you talk about them with others and not feel like they define you, you’re primed to start again.
I’ve been in personal training for over a decade and I’ve had more failures than you could imagine. I’ve tried outdoor classes that lasted only a few weeks due to poor sign-up rates.
I taught bootcamp classes that were amazing but I had to stop because I had babies and no one to run the show while I was busy adjusting to my new life.
I tried one-on-one and small-group health coaching sessions which never took off. I taught nutrition classes to the only two people who showed up.
I put myself out there and I’ve failed so many times because what I thought would happen, what I hoped would happen, never happened.
Yet, here I am, working on something new that I think has real legs. And I’m going to keep at it, because each failed attempt, while a tough pill to swallow, was a lesson I could pull something from.
I know helping others get fit is what I’m meant to do without a doubt. And I’m so certain because it’s in my heart and when I’m doing it, when I’m working out with people, motivating them, helping them, I’m full. I’m full of happiness.
So I take each failed attempt and learn from it. The happiness I feel is what defines me, and gives me purpose. I don’t let the failures define me.
Welcome failures if you can learn from them because they’ll help you to adjust your sails and that is how you learn, grow, and achieve better results.
It’s in the constant fine-tuning that failures provide that can guide us.
2. Release yourself from it.
There’s an insane amount of suffering that lives in this one thought pattern:
I want to ________ (fill in the blank with anything, be 10 lbs lighter, make more money, be a writer, quit my job, etc.) but I’ve tried and failed so many times, I don’t know what to do.
When you’ve tried and tried again to no avail but you still have that desire within you, it would be foolish to keep trying by going down the same path.
The mental damage that’s happening when you live in a cycle of stops and starts is worse than failing. It’s worse because you’re not learning anything and frustration is mounting.
That’s when it’s time to give yourself a break. Force yourself to slow down and take time to uncover what’s at play here because chances are, there is something going on deep down that’s manifesting as something else.
It may sound a bit woo-woo but I bet if you stop to listen to that voice in your head — not the one that’s always chatting away about how it’s hopeless and you’re never going to get to where you want to be, but the other one, the more quiet and wise one — you’ll begin to see what’s going on underneath.
Something is holding you back, but you’re never going to understand what it is by ignoring it, displacing it, or brushing over it.
It’s like when we yell at someone. That yelling is more a reflection of what’s going on internally and not so much what the other person did to make us angry.
Force yourself to slow down and reflect, think, engage with your inner world and discover what it is that’s holding you back. Let go of your desires and begin to find peace and happiness at this moment. Stress and worry cannot live in the moment you are present. In that space you find clarity.
When you’re able to uncover what’s holding you back, only then can you move forward and take the steps that will bring you to your goal. Only then can you truly be successful.
Time used wisely is your best opportunity.
When we stop rushing around and give a little of our precious time to ourselves, we can better our lives. It’s absolutely 100% true.
Devote time to understanding yourself, and your habits, and learn how to live better. Live your dreams, lose weight, change your career, follow your passion, and do the things that make you happy. It’s all possible, you just have to force yourself to slow down and either choose to learn from failures or uncover what’s driving your behavior.
AM Costanzo is a wellness coach, a motivational junkie, loves a-ha moments, and loves to help people feel strong, powerful, and downright fabulous in body and mind!