Feeling like a failure sucks.
Like your brand new car just got a dent in it, sucks. Or, your best friend just threw up on your brand new Michael Kors pumps, sucks.
Yeah I know that visual is gross, but trust me, it sucks.
Failure is one of those tricky life experiences. If we allow it, failure can make us feel things like weakness, regret, embarrassment all without even asking your permission to make you feel that way.
Besides the side-effect feelings of failure, those that experience it are often left to pick up the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle that was never whole to begin with. Now how the heck, are you supposed to complete the puzzle without all the pieces?
Well, what if the pieces you do have show just enough of that final picture for you to get the idea?
What if you could identify the holes based on what the puzzle looks like at present?
Hmmm, I think we are on to something here.
Reframing failure into a learning opportunity, possibly very painful opportunity, but a learning opportunity none the less. (Ok, I know that sounded corny, but just stick with me here) We are going to use your failure as a method in which to get clear on next steps so that the painful feelings we mentioned above were not felt for nothing.
So the launch of your rave new product or service you’ve spent copious amounts of time and money on opened up to crickets?
So you got a poor review of your product you worked so hard perfecting? Or, your services for a wedding that you poured your heart into?
Maybe you poured your heart into a business concept that turned out to be something you didn’t enjoy?
Well, contrary to what your fears are telling you, it’s not the end of the road. Let’s take a look at those puzzle pieces, shall we?
If your launching to crickets, maybe you need to take a look at your marketing and promotion strategy. Did you tell a handful of your best friends and blast the sign up info on Facebook to no avail? Well, are you sure that those folks you shared your launch or product information with were really your target market? Did you really do all you could to build reinforcement for your launch? How many touches did you extend to your proposed clients and furthermore, did you have a clear call to buy or sign up?
What about if you got a poor review, what can you learn here? Maybe the communication strategy wasn’t strong enough, or maybe it was too much? What if they didn’t understand your contract terms because maybe they weren’t as clear as you first thought? Or maybe they don’t exist at all? What’s more, were they the right clients for you?
And what if you just feel completely derailed. Sometimes figuring out what you don’t like is just as important as figuring out what makes you abundantly giddy to do. Additionally, why do you enjoy what you do? Is it because it’s an outlet for you, and once converted into a business is no longer enjoyable? Do you have the necessary skills and confidence that you need to push past the tough stuff?
I’m not pointing fingers here, really. I’ve been there, I get it. These questions might be tough but you’ll never gain any clarity without making decisions and acting on them.
Next time you launch, will you be more informed? Oh hell yes.
Once the initial sting wears off, a perceived failure can hold a lot of truths that maybe you didn’t see the first time around, or maybe you didn’t want to see them. Whatever the case may be, take an objective look at your “failure”. Hone in on any trigger points that you feel may have impacted why you did not get the response you were looking for. Make adjustments and course correct accordingly. Something to keep forefront in your mind is that everyone starts as a beginner. You choose which lessons to pay attention to and you choose how you will allow them to shape you.
Don’t allow a “failure” to derail you from success, happiness, and fulfillment. Instead use it to drive you forward, it’ll make your success that much sweeter when all of your hard learned lessons become just as valuable on your journey as the end result.
To your success.
Take a moment to share a “failure” you’ve struggled with and any lessons you learned along the way. You never know how your words can help someone else struggling to overcome their own battles.