Recovering from Failures

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You, me, them, we all have our own history, both the good and the bad ones, the positives and the negatives, the pros and the cons. But, one thing that shapes us all is that we all have to experience the bittersweet of one huge failure, at least once in our life. It could come in different forms, maybe a failure in career, in your study, or even in your relationship. It seems like we have put all of our efforts, we have sacrificed our times for the sake of success but unfortunately the universe just does not always work the way we want it to work. To determine whether our experience with failure is positive or not, it all comes back to how we perceive this failure, how we accept, how we deal with it. According to what I have experienced, failure comes in so many shapes and sometimes it just pops out of nowhere and out of the blue. But, there are three main things I would like to share with you about dealing with failure and how to recover from possibly the lowest point of your life.

  1. Accept it as a part of your journey

Accepting failure and be a hundred and ten percent okay with it is no easy task. It might take  quite some time until you could probably make peace with that part of your journey, with your failure. I must admit that to accept something unexpectedly negative is the hardest part. My first huge failure that really affected me took place months ago when I failed my internship application at this company I was dying to work at since junior high school. It might seem like a small matter to others, but to me at the time it had a huge impact to my life. I was feeling down and not only I messed up my routine, but also my relationship with others because I could not get myself together. It was not bad only for myself, but it also had the side effect to other people who actually cares about me. I thought I deserved to be in the lowest point of my life and to take a considerable amount of time off the reality. But what I did not realize yet at that moment is how my behaviour affected others or the fact that actually it was just me being so selfish because I just cannot accept my failure just yet. In that journey of accepting my own failure, I think I have come to the realization that this phase of my life will end, this too shall pass, everything will come to an end and our life will not stop just like that. It all will come back to normal and nothing will change drastically because it was just an event and it should not make us drowning in our own tears because our sadness can be something temporary if we take our failure and accept it in the wisest way.

2. Do not let it define you

The second one is how you should not let one failure define you as a person. Sometimes, we perceive our failure as an odd justification to how we are just not enough as a person after everything we might have done and sacrificed. If you let just one failure define you, then you might have just failed yourself. Your experience with failure should shape you as a better person instead not something that will discourage you from being a better person. But, failure is often being perceived as something that makes you feel less worthy and not good enough. First of all, you should know that this kind of thought will destroy you from the inside. You know that your worst enemy comes from within, from the inside of your head. So, avoid all these destructive thoughts and appreciate all the efforts you have managed to make instead. Another note I would like to share is how we, as a person, do not need to define ourselves. There is this one part Timothy Grayson’s essay named Philosophy of Identity that I would like to share with you as it has given me an insight to see myself and my worth as a person.

One intrinsically ‘owns’ a few things about oneself, such as physical characteristics, and possesses a few, such as knowledge or skills. None of these by themselves, however, constitute an identity. They are characteristics: often unique and always inherent in the person. So, although they may be unique themselves, it is wrong to suggest that DNA or fingerprints or speech patterns are an identity. The DNA profile is an identifying characteristic; similarly, fingerprints and specific professional accreditations are not identities, but identifiers….” Grayson (2012)

Although it might seem as too much to grasp for a simple matter as dealing with failure, I personally think that it can really be a clear explanation to what I am trying to say here. Nothing should define you and your identity as a person and there is absolutely no need to justify yourself to everyone. You are in charge of your own happiness so do not let just one failure define you

3. Take it as a motivation

The last point I would like to share is how your failure should not discourage you from looking for another egg in the basket. Your failure should become a component in this building made out of motivation. It should not discourage you from trying and so on. Your failure should motivate you to move a step forward to your goal. Look at your failure as a sign of positivity, as a lesson that might prepare yourself if you were about to experience the same thing again in the future. One failure should not stop you from looking for another opportunity because when you fail, a whole new opportunity awaits.

Photo provided by author