Have you ever failed at anything in your life?

How did you feel about it afterwards?

So often in life you might think you have failed.

And yet in hindsight these failures prove to be gifts. As they say, there is no such thing as failure, only feedback.

Also, no such thing as failure, only lessons.

Last night I attended an event where a number of very successful business people spoke briefly but amusingly about their perceived “cock-ups”.

Now please know that cock-up is a technical term for a mistake!

And boy what cock-ups they talked about!

From a mistake that cost $60 million to one whereby an expert spokeswoman was sued by the head of an FT 100 company.

So next time you feel you have failed and had a “cock-up”, ask yourself:-

What is the lesson in all of this?

What can I do differently next time?

What will be funny about this situation in 5 or 10 years from now?

Also, look back on your own life now and reflect on your own biggest “cock-ups”.

This will help you get over any latent negativity and also help you lighten up in the future when faced with a similar challenge.

How have your past cock-ups helped you to get to where you are now?

What is so amusing looking back now at your cock-ups?

What lessons can you share with others from your cock-ups?

There were some interesting learnings shared last night and here are some of them:-

• Don’t believe in your own PR. If it sounds too good too good to be true, it probably is!

• 6Ps – piss poor planning produces poor performance

• Bounce back! Screw up and bounce back from your bumps.

• Decisions shape our lives, not our circumstances. Take some action around your decisions.

• Give something back to those less fortunate.

For me, the key message was this – it is okay to make mistakes – as long as you learn from them, move on and grow. And don’t let lightning strike twice in the same place.

So go out and be prepared to make mistakes – it could be the fastest way of getting to where you want to be! 

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