I’ve been talking about failures a lot lately.
Here’s 4 powerful reframes I wanna offer you at the beginning of this brand new week.
Try them on when you screw up or make a mistake this week.
And see how those reframes impact how you feel + how you respond to that exact same mistake.
You might just blow your own damn mind.
Situation: You made a mistake. You encountered a fail.
1) Typical response #1 – THE DRAMA
This is awful!
This is horrible!
I wanna crawl up in ball and hide from world!
But the thing is, a failure is simply something that went different than expected.
No more, no less.
Mistakes and failures are just proof that you actually DID something, that you took action, that you gave it a go, instead of dreaming, overthinking and staying in the safety of your comfort zone.
And that is so powerful.
You deserve a pat on the back for doing just that (instead of beating yourself up).
Because taking action, KNOWING that you might make a mistake or fail, is the ONLY way to get something done.
To finish that report, to send out that email, to lead that project, to give that presentation, to have that difficult conversation.
To have the impact you KNOW you can have.
2) Typical response #2: THE TAKING IT PERSONALLY
I AM a failure.
I AM a pathetic loser.
I AM not as capable or as smart as I thought I was (and now everyone will know that too!)
But the thing is, mistakes and failures are NOT a measure of your worth.
They are NOT a measure of the value you bring to the table or of what you’re capable of.
Mistakes and failures are NOT the final, absolute truth about you.
They’re just the world around you responding to something you did or said – right there, in that moment in time.
They’re just something that went different than expected – right there, in that moment in time.
You MADE a mistake.
You ARE NOT a mistake.
3) Typical response #3: THE DOOMED FOREVER AND EVER
My reputation is ruined.
I screwed up this opportunity and I’ll never get another opportunity like this again.
I made a fool of myself and I’ll never get this right again.
But the truth is, mistakes and failures don’t predict the future.
A failure today doesn’t define what your future will look like.
That’s something you do – in the way you respond to that failure.
4) Typical response #4: THE GIVING UP
This is too hard.
This won’t work.
I should just stop and give up.
Mistakes and failures are simply feed-back.
They show you what didn’t work.
They provide you with real-life information the way thinking, planning, dreaming never can.
They are a necessary step in making things happen.
They are a normal part of doing things in life.
So you can come up with an adjusted strategy, idea or plan.
So you can figure out your next step.
The true story behind success is not a string of perfect, flawless, turned-out-exactly-the-way-I-hoped-they-would actions.
The true story behind success is a string of tiny successes and oh-shit failures.
BOTH are foundational.
And BOTH are worth celebrating.