Failing Upwards

Failure. Two syllables, and a dreaded word that seems to carry a stench all of its own. But failure is necessary to succeed.

Sounds crazy, doesn’t it? But if you talk to successful people, particularly entrepreneurs and international business professionals, they’ll tell you that their failures helped them succeed.

Why? Very simple – when you fail, you learn what not to do. You learn what doesn’t work. And you take those lessons forward to either do a better job or change course. It’s called failing upward. 

But in order to fail upward, you have to take chances. You have to be willing to fail. And if you do fall flat on your face, you have to simply get back up, dust yourself off and try again.

You’re probably thinking, “That’s easier said than done!” And it does take courage to go into something thinking, “This is going to be a disaster!”

But the key is to tell yourself that if you fail, your lessons will better prepare you for the future. It also makes sense to play the “What if?” game. What’s the worst that can happen? How can you anticipate a worst case scenario, prepare for it, and then possibly sidestep the minefields you’re now aware of? Last but not least, ask yourself this important question – If you don’t take a chance, what are you losing?

What success looks like.

There’s a great inspirational quote. No one really knows who came up with it, it’s been around forever – students and captains of industry alike have printed it out and posted it up on their walls.

Don’t Be Afraid to Fail

You’ve failed many times, although you may not remember. You fell down the first time you tried to walk. You almost drowned the first time you tried to swim, didn’t you? Did you hit the ball the first time you swung a bat? Heavy hitters, the ones who hit the most home runs, also strike out a lot.

R.H. Macy failed seven times before his store in New York caught on.

English novelist John Creasey got 753 rejection slips before he published 564 books.

Babe Ruth struck out 1,330 times, but he also hit 714 home runs.

Don’t worry about failure.

Worry about the chances you miss when you don’t even try.

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