A professor once asked me, “Al, in your opinion, why do students cheat?”
“Because they have an ineffective strategy for dealing with failure.”
Think about that. When people don’t know how to deal with failure they’ll do anything to avoid it.
Nobody wants to fail, but exceptional people aren’t afraid to fail. They develop a strategy.
1. Forgive yourself. The Duncan Nugget® that I probably quote the most is #21: Failure is only permanent if you quit. I might get sad. I might get mad. But I refuse to beat myself up about it.
2. Master the lesson. Analyze what went wrong and don’t do it again. Duh!
3. Work hard to get better. Learn and practice what you learned. If you don’t know how to improve then ask someone who knows what s/he is talking about.
That’s my strategy.
Million Dollar Question:
What is your strategy for dealing with failure?
ACTION STEPS AND DISCUSSION QUESTIONS
1. Write down 3-5 steps you will take if (when) you have to deal with failure.
2. What are some of the common reasons for people being afraid to fail?
3. Have you ever experienced a significant failure? What was it like? What did you learn about yourself and others?
4. What advice would you give to a friend who experienced a major failure or setback?
5. Would you rather succeed and learn nothing or fail and gain wisdom? Why? If you succeed and learn nothing would you continue to be successful? If you fail and gain wisdom would you continue to fail?
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