Mayday Mayday: Fear of Failure

Lately, I have seen several people confront what they see as failures. Some of them feel on the brink of failure, some of them are facing a journey’s end and the result is unfavorable to them in this moment, and some of them fear that failure is looming in the future waiting to pop suddenly into their lives like a malevolent jack in the box. All of them have handled their supposed “failures” with grace, logic, and humility that I can only hope to emulate.

Most of us fear failure, including yours truly. But I think that it’s important to keep in mind that what we may view as “failure” may actually lead to a new opportunity or journey that could bring us to a better place in our lives. If anything, it will lead to new adventures. I know that this is difficult to remember, and I’m too often guilty of looking at “failures” as only negatives rather than as potential positives. So, for those of us (including myself) who fear failure, here are some nice quotes to remind us that maybe “failures” aren’t necessarily mayday situations and may instead be the starts of new and grand undertakings.

Steps to Greatness
The steps to greatness often entail you falling down a few times before you reach that promised top. Photo By: Elizabeth Preston

1.  “Success is most often achieved by those who don’t know that failure is inevitable.” – Coco Chanel

2.  “The phoenix must burn to emerge.” – Janet Fitch

3.  “Failure should be our teacher, not our undertaker. Failure is delay, not defeat. It is a temporary detour, not a dead end. Failure is something we can avoid only by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing.” – Denis Waitley

4.  “Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising every time we fail.” – Oliver Goldsmith (although it’s often attributed to Confucius)

5.  “Most people have attained their greatest success just one step beyond their greatest failure.” – Napoleon Hill

6.  “Failures are finger posts on the road to achievement.” – C. S. Lewis

7.  “There are no failures—just experiences and your reactions to them.” – Tom Krause

8.  “You’ll always miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” – Wayne Gretsky

Flopping Fish Fail
Fishermen are quite familiar with failure. Here is one of my fishing fails. *sigh* That was a good fish too.  Don’t worry, the fish swam off just fine. Photo Property of: Elizabeth Preston

9.  “Everything you want is on the other side of fear.” – Jack Canfield

10.  “Remember that failure is an event, not a person.” – Zig Ziglar

11.  “Failure is only the opportunity to begin again, only this time more wisely.” – Henry Ford

12.  “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”—Michael Jordan

13.  “Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.” – Calvin Coolidge

14.  “Never let success get to your head; never let failure get to your heart.” – Anonymous

15.  “Do not judge me by my successes. Judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.” – Nelson Mandela



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