Life Health & Wellbeing

Tuesday 20 August 2019

Mindful moment… It's good to fail

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Marianne Power

A couple of years ago, a Princeton University professor published his 'CV of failures', which outlined the degree courses he didn't get on to, the research funding he didn't receive and the papers which were rejected by academic journals.

Ironically, this document of doom was read millions of times and brought the professor more recognition than any of his apparently successful work.

Readers were grateful to see that someone that successful had had a lot of knock-backs and failed endeavours. But since then, the idea of a failure CV has taken off as a way of self-improvement, with productivity guru Tim Ferriss recommending we keep a document which lists not only our failures but, more importantly, what we learned from each one. Failure is not really failure, the logic goes, if you learn something from it.

And so I've created a new document on my laptop where I can update my failures, my rejections and my humiliations along with the lessons learned.

I suspect I'll need an external hard drive to store them all...

* Marianne Power is the author of

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