Dealing with disappointment and failure
'Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude' - Zig Ziglar
Everyone makes mistakes and fails. All of the very successful entrepreneurs I know lost money in their first or early business ventures. As Richard Branson says: "Nobody gets everything right the first time. Business is like a giant game of chess - you have to learn quickly from your mistakes". "Successful entrepreneurs don't fear failure; they learn from it and move on."
So how do you deal with disappointment and when things do not go your way ? Bitter or Better ?
A 2017 Stanford study by Psychologist Carol Dweck shows that attitude is a better predictor of success than IQ. She says that people's core attitudes fall into two categories - either a growth or a fixed mind-set.
Those with a fixed mind-set believe you cannot change. When challenged by situations that appear to be too big to handle, they feel hopeless and overwhelmed.
People with a growth mind-set, believe they can improve things. And they consistently outperform those with a fixed mind-set, because they embrace challenges, treating them as opportunities to grow.
In a seeming contradiction, your success comes more from how you deal with failure than anything else. People with a growth mind-set are problem solvers and go at it a different way when things don't work.
It is important to acknowledge disappointment. Acceptance is always a fundamental step in any growth process. It is healthy to feel sad if you feel sad. Interestingly when you meditate and are mindful and allow yourself to feel feelings, they invariably pass more quickly. When you suppress, they linger. A range of studies also show that allowing yourself to experience the hurt you feel may even increase the positives and learning you take from a situation. You do not have to share with everyone but it is important to be honest with yourself.
So what does all this mean to you ? Ultimately, how you deal with Disappointment and Failure is what determines your Success. And the great news for all of us is that our attitude can be changed and developed. We all have the ability to develop a mind-set oriented towards growth and success.
Never stay helpless or hopeless. We all hit times in our lives when we feel overwhelmed or even broken. The test is how we react to those feelings. We can either learn and move forward or relive and let it drag us down.
The world is flooded with examples and most coaches and successful people share their own lives as examples to inspire and motivate others. Oprah Winfrey was fired from her job as a TV anchor in Baltimore for being 'too emotionally invested in her stories,' Henry Ford had two failed car companies before succeeding with Ford. J.K. Rowling was rejected 12 times before achieving unparalleled success with the Harry Potter books.
They may have felt rejected and hopeless but they did not give in to it. There are countless stories and examples showing us that it is your attitude in failure that determines your ultimate success.
Some would even say that there is no such thing - as to fail means First Attempt In Learning. Or even that the only real failure is to not get back on the saddle and pursue your dreams.
If you want to succeed you can. Be passionate. Take action. Focus. Develop a growth mind-set. Expect results. Expect not everything to go your way all the time. Learn. Apply the learnings. Work every day towards your goal. Believe and you will achieve. And Never Give Up.