Mondays are considered days when people are stronger to endure setbacks and mishaps comparing to Fridays ("Oh, not today, it's Friday, it's almost weekend, this cannot happen today!). The mental preparation we have done when Mondays come, is based on the fact that there is no more the weekend-enthusiasm, we know that from now on it's going to be all about work-work-work and, comparing to the weekend, we are sure that it is going to be one of these days that anything can go wrong. Yes, Mondays have the rumor of an awful day.
On a Monday like this, (September 5th) I was invited by the Connecting Women in the Hague to talk about Failure and how we can see it as a gift, and not as a setback.
A group of curious and brave women were there to listen to some of these points and contribute with their input from their personal and professional experience:
- why is failure considered that bad? How did this all perception of failure start?
- perception and impact of failure depend on different aspects of one's personality, e.g. inner beliefs, locus of control, experiences with achievements in the past, etc.
- failing does indeed offer benefits, e.g. to set yourself free, to achieve clarity, to enhance your creativity, to let you find your real purpose
- you can learn to fail well, e.g. by giving meaning to your effort and not your success, by looking for alternatives (having a plan B), by following the motto "fail, adapt, change"
They loved some of the quotes of the presentation, like:
"Life is not a list of acquisitions." and "I didn't fail. I just discovered 1000 ways which didn't work." (the last one was from Thomas Edison).
Last but not least, a few days later, one of the women of the group, wrote this post on her blog, about how she was inspired to chase after her dream after talking about failure and how to embrace it.
"In less than an hour, she (Vassia) took the word failure and transformed it into a positive concept. Everybody in this world must experience failure to get to know themselves, gain clarity in their lives and to learn how to succeed; even if that success comes in another form than you originally intended, she explained... The advice that poured forth (for the imaginary person-writer, Lily, that is afraid of failure), the strategies for addressing her passion to write and her frustrations around her failure to publish seemed to be speaking to the future me. If Lilly takes up the gauntlet and gives it a try, why can’t I? Because if you view failure and success as strange synonyms, you have changed the way you view the world."
Well, that was a Monday like no other!..
Looking forward to seeing you soon.
Here you will find the latest news of The Anti-Loneliness Project (media, workshops, presentations). Enjoy!
How to Stop Perfectionism
How much of a Perfectionist Are You
From Conflict to Connection