Why Failure Isn’t Always a Bad Thing

Many of you reading this blog may have clicked out of curiosity, or possibly because you disagree with the title, but by the time you finish reading hopefully your outlook on failure will have changed (slightly)!

Failure is something everyone will experience throughout their life, some experiencing more failure than others, but the true test is not about how much failure a person can take, but rather how they respond to each failure. (Excuse the overused motivational reference)

Nobody enjoys failing, but failure can provide us with the building blocks of success. When you think of companies at the top of their game, we don’t think of the failures they experienced to get to the point they are at now. Steve jobs with Apple; Bill gates with Microsoft; they all have experienced failure in their lives, but through perseverance and the ability to deal with failure in the correct way, they rose to the top in their respective markets. For example, Jan Koum one of the co-creators of the messaging app WhatsApp applied for a job within Facebook and was rejected in 2007. Seven years later he sold WhatsApp to Facebook for over US$19bn. This is one of the many individuals who turned their failures into future success!

So, what is the correct way to deal with failure? To explain this, it is easier to begin with ways people can deal with failure in the wrong way:


Admitting to the mistakes we have made is one of the most difficult things for many to do. It is easy to point the blame and make excuses, but to deal with failure correctly it is important to set egos aside to turn that failure into success!

Chasing Your Losses:

When we fail, our first instinct is to try and regain our losses. While if done correctly it can be beneficial, most cases end in more failure. It is important to draw a line under previous losses to succeed in the future. You can’t focus on the future if you are focusing on the past.

Now that we have discussed how you should not deal with failure, here a few ways that can be more beneficial to you!

Don’t Take It Personally:

By separating failure from your personal identity, it can stop you from seeing yourself as a failure.  For many, failure is the stem of future success, but by personalising past failures it can ruin your self-confidence and self-esteem.

Learn from Failure, Let Go and Move Forward:

Many of us when we fail analyse our failures too much, but it is important to analyse ‘why’ we failed, learn from this mistake and move forward. By holding onto past failures, we cause ourselves to have a constant reminder of times we failed.  It is important to leave the past in the past essentially. Obsessing over past failures can intensify it, making it more personal and stopping you from moving forward. As I stated before, you cannot move forward if you are stuck in the past!

At the end of the day, each of us deals with failure differently, it comes down to how you as a person perceive failure and move forward. Do you agree that failure isn’t always a negative thing? Do you have any helpful tips you use to get over times you have failed? Let us know below.

If anything in this article was of interest to you and you would like further information or details on any aspect of it, please don’t hesitate to contact us on info@vos.ie.