Failure can be a good thing. Shock horror, we know. In a recent article in the Washington Post, Eve Fairbanks says: “In contemporary life, we respect failure only if we can interpret it as a stepping-stone to accomplishment.”
Even though some mistakes don’t have obvious redemptive power, sometimes it helps to take a step back when we’re frustrated and look at the bigger picture.
Why did this fail? What can I do better next time? Do I really need to knock on that door and why am I so angry with it remaining closed?
In Kathryn Schultz’ book, ‘Being Wrong’, she suggests acknowledging the distinctive essence of failure rather than straining to invest it with positive utility actually allows us to experience a greater range of emotions and see more texture and colour in the world. “Failure can feed imagination, as we construct ideas of what might have happened if we hadn’t made mistakes.”
Tara wrote on the blog about a recent disappointing experience with one of her business idols, where she realised that she didn’t need recognition to be considered successful. Rather than be recognised and appreciated by the “top dogs”, she decided it was her ego getting in the way, and it was much more fulfilling to continue doing great work for her existing clients and have them appreciate us as an agency.
So from failure comes more, sometimes better, doors opening.