It’s true! The presupposition that there is no such thing as failure, only feedback is central to our ability to learn. It opens up neural pathways and you will find that you are more open to leaning if you accept that it is ok to fail, provided that you learn the lessons, in any aspect of life.
I introduce this presupposition often when I am coaching, encouraging clients to focus on what they have learned from an experience and then to reframe something that hasn’t worked as they’d hoped or expected into a learning experience. Experience shows that this takes the negative emotion out of an experience and introduces opportunity and possibilities. Instead of it being wrong, we have learnt something. Instead of feeling bad, we are free to form a new plan of action and try again.
Here are the words of some successful people who recognise the value of not getting it right the first time:
“Failure is only the opportunity opportunity to begin again more intelligently” – Henry Ford
“One fails forward towards success” – Charles F Kettering
“Failure doesn’t mean you are a failure – it just means you haven’t suceeded yet” – Robert Schuller
” I didn’t fail ten thousand times. I successfully eliminated, ten thousand times, materials and combinations which wouldn’t work.” and “I have not failed. I’ve just found … The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.” ― Thomas Edison
“Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm” – Churchill
The process of experience, observe, feedback, try again, feedback, try again, achieving success is natural. Unless we try and possibly fail, we never get the feedback that enables us to learn. Good luck with your learning – outside of your comfort zone is where the magic happens.