Failing is something that many new entrepreneurs are afraid of, and it's one of the main reasons that people don't follow their dreams. The good news is that failure is actually great in more ways than one. Here's 5 reasons why!
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This is a topic that I feel very strongly about, and it's also something that is often a huge roadblock for people starting out on their journey of entrepreneurship. Being scared to fail is something that almost all new entrepreneurs fear (and people in general!). What saddens me, is that it was not their choice to feel this way. We are brought up in an education system that punishes failure, and if you make mistakes you are a ‘fool’ or ‘dumb’, when in reality, failing is the ABSOLUTE BEST way to learn. Failure is how we grow, how we evolve as a species. You will learn more by making failures and learning from them then you ever could trying to be flawless. To those still frightened by it, I have good news and bad news.
The bad news, is that whether you like it or not, you are going to fail. It is impossible not to, unless you attempt literally nothing, and ironically, that in itself is the biggest fail of all. The good news, is that FAILURE IS A GOOD THING. Some struggle to understand why people say this, so here are my 5 reasons why failure is good.
1. It's the best way to learn.
Failing at something is the best way to learn how to do it right (or better) the next time around. You learn to ride a bike by falling off it. You get better at basketball by missing the hoop. You become smarter in school by failing at a subject and studying harder. This is because it forces you to see where you made a mistake, and see what you have to do better next time. Yes, some failures are more painful or expensive than others, but by failing at something you become better at it. For those still not convinced, answer me this: How long would you give a baby to figure out how to walk before you told them to give up?
2. It teaches you to problem solve.
Failing allows you to really look into where you went wrong. Think about all those times you've made an error and you thought to yourself 'if only I did that instead'. This is incredibly useful, especially when you're doing something that takes several or more attempts before you get it right. In my opinion, along with teaching someone, failing is the highest form or learning. It's the most effective way to quickly and effectively grow.
I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that don't work'.
- Thomas A. Edison
3. It's appealing to investors and employers.
If you've never failed at anything, more often than not, an investor will not want to work with you. This is for a variety of reasons, the two main ones being
1) You're unpredictable in the event of failure or adversity, because you've never experienced it before and
2) The law of averages implies that every successful business person has 7 failures behind them before they succeed. This obviously doesn't apply for everything, but to something they think about.
'It's not about how hard you hit. It's about how hard you can get hit, and still get back up'.
- Rocky Balboa.
4. It leads to success.
Success is a matter of lots of little failures, combined into one successful journey. If you really want to become successful, you must be prepared to keep pushing past your failures and past your roadblocks until you make it, and you will if you want it enough. All of the people you look up to, your heroes and role models, do you think they never made any mistakes? Of course not. Each of them have a failed over and over and over, and that's what makes them successful. Failure also makes success taste sweeter, so keep that in mind if you're feel frustrated.
'Success is the ability to go from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm.'
- Sir Winston Churchill
5. It's an opportunity for a fresh start.
If you manage to really screw something up in a big way, as well as all the previous points applying to you, you can also have a fresh start. You can try it all over again from the beginning, and this is exciting. Don't worry about critics or naysayers, you're not doing it for them, you're doing it for you. So pick yourself up, have a fresh start, and give it another crack.
When the mentality of failure is harnessed for the greater good, it can be an incredibly powerful thing. In life you win or you learn. If you use this mentality in your life and your projects, nothing will hold you back. I personally am excited to fail at something, because it means I will get better at it faster. Lastly... Failure is good, but obviously it hurts. I do recommend learning from other people's failures to save you time and money, by having mentors, role models, and continuously self educating.
'The phoenix must burn to emerge.'
- Janet Fitch.
I hope that by reading this you've understood the right way to approach failure. Do not be afraid! Be excited! If there's anything that you've been putting off, or anything you've been too scared to do because of failure, I encourage you to tackle it. IN LIFE, YOU WIN OR YOU LEARN. Use this approach, and you cannot lose.