Tag Archives: fail forward

When The Going Gets Tough, Do You Keep Going?

1 Aug


“You have nothing to lose if you fail, but everything to gain by trying again.

“When you journal daily make a point to highlight what you have learned and what has changed in you. It is always what is inside that determines what we experience in each situation. We are human and this is the way we evolve and mature.

“We exchange time for experience…That is life.

“Take charge of yours…make goals and keep them.

“Make goals that involve stretching, but allow them to be within your means.

Daily accomplishments strengthen us.

Make some goals accomplishable on your way to major leaps!”*

These words are from my long time business coach and mentor Parisha Taylor. She is constantly reminding those of us she works with of the value of “failing forward.”   In her words, when we experience a “mis-take” we can easily do a “re-take” thus turning the learning experience from our “failure” into the building blocks of the next success. It’s that simple.

Grandmother Parisha was raised in a culture that provided a nourishing environment for learning through mis-takes and re-takes. So it’s natural for her to live and teach from this simple truth. For those of us who grew up with parents, teachers or other authority figures who might have admonished, criticized or demeaned us for our mistakes, we have to overcome old feelings of embarrassment or being “wrong” which we learned to equate with being “bad.”

Our upbringings are what they were. We can’t change the people from our past. But we CAN change the lessons we bring forward from the past.

Long after those “authority figures” are out of our lives, we allow their voices to occupy space in our heads. We bring forward those feelings of shame, hurt, or anger that block us from the freedom to make mistakes. We live in a culture that confuses “ignorance” for “stupidity,’ and condemns anything less than perfection, which in itself is self-defeating. Self admonishment is not an effective teacher. I know.

Life is a perpetual learning lab. It’s up to us to decide to be the perpetual student. By freeing ourselves from the old stigmas of making mistakes, we create an environment for ourselves that inspires success through persistence. Far too many people quit when they are closer than they realize to their goal.

By journaling our day at night-time before going to bed, as Coach Parisha Taylor advises, we can stake stock of the day’s successes and failures. We take note of what worked and what we could have done better or differently. These are the lessons we bring forth from our day – be it business, relationships, whatever.

Our experiences change us, if we chose to learn from them.  Journaling can assist to gain a perspective on that as well. “It is always what is inside that determines what we experience in each situation.”

Coach Parisha Taylor once shared these words with us from another great motivator, Brian Tracy: “RESOLVE in advance that you will never give up…RESOLVE to persist until you succeed.”  She reminds us that by refusing to stop, we become unstoppable!

Coach Parish’s also taught that time is the most precious commodity we have.  It is the only thing that we spend that we can never get back once we have. We can always get more money, more things…but time, once it’s gone, it’s gone. So exchanging out time for experience is a great way to make sure we get the most out of it every day. Miss no opportunity to learn from an interaction, a situation, however seemingly small or insignificant. For those moments will become the building blocks that we can utilize to take on the mountains we dare to dream about!

By treating life as an opportunity instead of a “sentence” – by realizing that every day is a gift, an adventure – by nurturing and loving ourselves – we can take on the most horrendous of circumstances and triumph – One victory at a time! – Deb Adler

*©1986-2010 Parisha Taylor. All rights reserved.

©2010 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved.

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