Don’t Shy Away From Losses

fail forward leadership leadership failures leadership strength learning from failure results Sep 17, 2023

The only way we can learn through success is by learning from failures along the way.

John Maxwell is currently writing a book titled, Return on Failure. As a matter of fact, he will share things like…Do something so big that failure is the option. In other words, you likely won’t get it right the first time.  If you get it right the first time it probably wasn’t big enough!

Wes and I (Cindy) are creating something right now that has plenty of risk.  Yet, I guarantee you, even in the areas that don’t work out as we plan or believe they will, we will learn valuable lessons.  We don’t plan on failing, but we certainly won’t shy away from losses and will learn, unlearn, and then re-learn a better way to create more success and value than if we had never learned from our experiences. If you intentionally take the time to learn from your experiences, you’ll have fewer bumps in the road of life.

Failure builds resilience and frankly even better ideas to implement than if we had initial success. It’s what we do with our failures that matters.

As a kid, I felt like I had plenty of failures.  And I did!  But somehow I missed the fact that all my friends were having failures too. I tried the piano but was mediocre, I didn’t enjoy it.  I picked up my brother's guitar and that didn’t go so well either.  I was pretty good at gymnastics, but when I went from a small middle school where I was good in comparison to the rest of the school to a very large high school, I didn't even make the team!  This can hit your confidence and self-esteem as a child and as an adult, if you don’t understand that failure can be your friend.

As a young adult, I started learning from my mistakes.  Then, I realized I had some strengths that I was pretty good at!  As I discovered strong areas and put more of my energy there, I learned avenues I wanted to take as a career path and eventually into an area I knew I was called to serve others in, which is leadership.  

I learned failures do not define anyone and that in order to succeed, we all need to fail. A big game changer is realizing those who win the biggest have usually taken their failures and learned how to go again, getting better results.