Why You Should Prepare For Failure Rather Than Success

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If you asked people between Success and Failure what they’d like to have, a majority of them would prefer to Succeed. But should they? Out of the people you asked nearly all of them will face failures at some point in their life.

Sometimes people will have to face multiple failures/ rejections in life before they get their first YES while some will find success early in their life only to loose it all over the years. So what should people prefer and most importantly how should you prepare yourself for the game of life?

Why failure is important?

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Failures in life acts as a guiding force. Think of failure as a compass in life. It will tell you which path to follow and which path to leave or give up on. When a person fails it tells him/her what works and what doesn’t.

Failure happens only when you exert yourself, put efforts and show up. It happens when to try to achieve things that are bigger than you and live a life of purpose.

Why Success is a lousy teacher?

There is a story about Bill Gates quoted in the book “Great By Choice” by author Jim Collins which tells us an important thing about failure:

It is said that Bill used to keep a picture of Henry Ford (founder of Ford Motors) in his office while he was working on building Microsoft. The picture was meant to remind him what had happened to Ford Motors after the demise of his founder, it symbolized that even a great company can go haywire and end up in disaster. One of Bill Gates’s goal was to prevent such a disaster from happening while building Microsoft.

Most successful founders are actually people who at some point in their lives were afraid to lose everything they ever owned and often took steps to prevent such a thing from happening which involved taking calculated risks.

Success teaches us only what works. It may come and go but your hard-work, skills, relationships and talent will always keep you at the top.

Luck has a role to play but it can be a pain in the ass!

You may have seen countless examples of people who won millions of dollars in lottery only to loose it all after a few years. The reason is success without effort has no value and without consistent efforts & learning in life, it is really hard to remain an overachiever.

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Luck has a role to play in your success but luck can be deceptive & waiting for luck to strike each and every time may keep you from reaching your full potential.

A stroke of luck can be a game changer for many. But over the years it is what you do after you achieved success that makes or breaks your life.

Success and Failure are different games altogether

Imagine you have achieved everything you ever wanted in life. Now its all about keeping that fame and glory. This will require a different kind of skill set than the one you possess. Most people fail at this stage.

Below is an excerpt from best-selling author Morgan Housel’s book Psychology of Money where he tries to explain why most rich people go broke. According to him,

“Getting money requires taking risks, being optimistic, and putting yourself out there. But keeping money requires the opposite of taking risk. It requires humility, and fear that what you’ve made can be taken away from you just as fast. It requires frugality and an acceptance that at least some of what you’ve made is attributable to luck, so past success can’t be relied upon to repeat indefinitely.”

The above applies not only to money but also to your life as well. You have to change and keep learning as time changes.

Conclusion

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It is important to live a life of purpose, and do something that adds value to others around you. But all this will come at a cost and you should be ready to face setbacks in life & face them with a smile. If it was easy everybody would do it and if everybody would’ve done it, it wouldn’t have been worthwhile at all.

“The brick walls are there for a reason. The brick walls are not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something. Because the brick walls are there to stop the people who don’t want it badly enough. They’re there to stop the other people.”

— Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture

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