Have you ever read the book Failing Forward by John C. Maxwell? If you haven’t, I highly recommend it. If you have, you know it’s an awesome book that shows you how to make the most of your mistakes and move forward to your ultimate goal. It tells you how to look at life’s setbacks, learn from them, and Maxwell teaches you how to fail successfully. How cool is that? I wish this book would’ve been around while I was growing up. If you know a child, share this book with them. What an amazing way to change the mindset of children while they’re young and teach them not to fear failure. We’ll certainly have fearless, forward-thinking future leaders.
Failure has such a horrible connotation associated with it and is perceived as a bad thing. It’s not the failure that hurts; it’s our wrong response to the failure. We need to retrain our brains to discover positive benefits can accompany negative experiences, if we have the right attitude. Do you realize failures are only as bad as you perceive them to be? Maxwell covers the top reasons people fail and explains how to master fear instead of being mastered by it. Here are his 15 steps to turning mistakes into stepping stones for success:
1. Realize there is one major difference between average people and achievers. The difference is in how they respond to failure.
2. Learn a new definition of failure.
3. Remove the “you” from failure. Don’t take it personally.
4. Take action and reduce your fear.
5. Change your response to failure by accepting responsibility.
6. Don’t let failure from outside get inside you.
7. Say good-bye to yesterday.
8. Change yourself, and your world changes.
9. Get over yourself and start giving yourself.
10. Find the benefit in every bad experience.
11. If at first you do succeed, try something harder.
12. Learn from a bad experience and make it a good experience.
13. Work on the weakness that weakens you.
14. Understand there’s not much difference between failure and success.
15. Get up, get over it, get going.
Successful people never dwell on past difficulties. If you’re not failing, you probably aren’t moving forward. Prepare yourself to pay the price of the occasional setback in exchange for the progress you’re making. Learn from all your experiences whether good or bad because nothing can teach you better than a bad experience. Fail early, fail often, and fail forward.
Editor’s Note: Angel Soria is an Internet Marketing Consultant, entrepreneur, columnist for the Tulare Kings Hispanic Times, expert contributor for www.saltywaffle.com, and currently obtaining her Executive MBA at Fresno State. To learn more about failing forward, visit www.fresnolocalinternetmarketing.com and enter your name and email address in the boxes provided. Follow her @talk2angelsoria.