Last week, we wrote about our failure narrative…the thing we say to ourselves when we fail. If you didn’t see the post, check it out. And if you did the exercise we suggested to uncover your default failure thinking, congratulations on knowing more about yourself than you did last week!
So now that we know our narrative – what can we do with that?
Decide if it matters. Just because we think it matters, doesn’t it mean it matters that much to you. So take an intentional inventory and a hard look at the narrative you uncovered last week. If that isn’t empowering, think through the payoffs if you change it and the pitfalls if you don’t. Then decide if it’s worth doing something about.
Create the great. What do you WANT the narrative to look like? We spend a lot of time as humans thinking about what isn’t working, instead of visualizing what would. (Talk about disempowering.) How would you like to show up when you fail? Take one of the failures in last week’s exercise and replay it with that in mind. You might be inspired.
Pick 3 ways to fail. This week. This reminds us of an inspirational failure talk last fall and the exercise we posed last week. If you couldn’t come up with how you’ve recently failed, you’re not trying anything new! And if you’ve gotten this far in the post, we assume that matters. So where can you step out this week? In relationship? Creative project at home? At work? There are so many ways to flex this muscle, we double-dog-dare you to try. Regret > Failure.
Here’s the thing. The older and wiser (we hope) we get, we just want to learn from what’s working and what isn’t. Don’t you? And failure is such an amazing teacher if we allow it to be. It’s one of the most powerful forms of feedback we can experience, so let’s do something with it.
We love Michael Jordan’s failure mindset:
“I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”
The more we internalize our failures, the harder it is to be resilient. And when we aren’t resilient, we don’t respond in a healthy way. When we don’t respond in a healthy way, we have negative impact and lose influence. So let’s see this as a decision vs default. How will you respond next time you fail? Be honest with yourself, because if you’re not, what’s the point?
Maybe we could all be more like Mike, if we did.