Having failed to meet my daily writing goals this week has me thinking about failure, and what it means to fail, why we fail, and what constructively we can do when we fail. I’ve spent a lot of time on this blog talking about goal setting and things like that, but why do we fail to achieve our goals?
Failure can be a way of evolving and learning. If we fail with purpose. Analyzing what went wrong and make corrections accordingly. The bigger question is why we fail. Here are ten reasons people fail.
Reasons We Fail
- The goal isn’t specific.
My goal was specific I wanted to write 2000 words a day. But, not every goal is that way. Some goals are nebulous and can change and even hard to pin down into words they are more like wishes.
- Doubting the goal can be achieved.
At the start of this week, I started a seven-book Romance series. I needed the first book finished by the end of September, That’s a tight writing schedule. But to be honest, I have never written sixty-five-thousand words. I have doubts that I am trying to overcome. Using journaling.
- Not working toward the goal.
I worked toward my goal when I wasn’t interrupted and wasn’t distracted and wasn’t too tired.
- The goal is not motivating.
I was highly motivated or at least I think I’m highly motivated, but I sure did get distracted easily compared to my other books. Where I sailed through and just knew what to write.
- Not being committed to the goal.
This is a big goal with a bunch of little goals inside it. Being committed to this goal is essential it will be the twenty-four hour a day seven day a week job for me for a whole year. 7 books in one year is a heck of a schedule.
- Not being focused on the goal.
I thought I was focusing on the goal when I was focusing on the business. I took care of the Author’s business instead of writing. It wasn’t a great choice.
- They have too many excuses not to meet the goal.
As you can tell I have plenty of excuses and they are all little things that are on this list.
- They don’t know how to handle failure.
I don’t know how to handle failure, but I’m getting better at it. currently, or in the recent past, I would ruminate on all my past mistakes not to search for solutions or patterns that could be broken, but to wallow in missey and punish myself for my past mistakes. Now I try and look forward.
- They get distracted.
That is mostly what happened this week I got distracted by being an author and forgot about being a writer.
- They don’t give up
I’m not ready to give up just yet, There’s always tomorrow. To-do better. There is a Mantra that I used to use when I was a runner. Good, better, best never let it rest till your good is better and your better is best. It takes a certain amount of courage to write and somehow I’ve found that courage. I’m not about to squander it.
Ten Ways To Handle Failure Successfully
Like I said before when I fail I tend to ruminate over my past mistakes punishing myself again for those mistakes and failures till I absolutely can’t stand it anymore. It is an unhealthy way to handle failure it can turn a bad day into a bad week without much effort. Below are some ideas on how to handle failure in a healthy way.
- Embrace your emotions. You need to feel the way your gonna feel for a while, but don’t let it go on too long set a limit on how long you’re gonna be sad or mad and then move on.
- Recognize unhealthy attempts to reduce the pain. Don’t go for the alcohol, or drugs, don’t even go for the pint of Ben and Jerry’s. Instead, go for a walk, or take a bubble bath.
- Practice healthy coping skills.
- Acknowledge unhealthy beliefs about failure.
- Develop realistic thoughts about failure.
- Accept an appropriate amount of responsibility for failure.
- Research famous failures.
- Ask yourself what you can learn from failure.
- Create a plan moving forward.
- Face your fears about failure.
You need to have a healthy attitude about failure and not be afraid of it you should learn from it even appreciate it. Here are some people who failed and went on to succeed beyond their wildest dreams.
- J.K. Rowling was rejected by 12 publishers before her manuscript was picked up for publication by a publisher it went on to sell 450 million copies making her 1 billion dollars and a movie franchise and a Disney tie-in.
- Steven King threw the manuscript for Carrie in the trash can. His wife picked it out of the trash encouraged him to work on it was passed over 30 times.
- Dr. Seuss was going to burn his stories they were rejected 27 times he now has a national day to remember him.
- Agatha Christie’s first two novels were rejected the second novel was finally accepted with the agreement that the ending change.
- John Le Carre the author who wrote The Spy Who Came In From The Cold had his manuscript rejected.
- Luisa May Alcott was to keep teaching she couldn’t write and her book is now considered a classic and is enjoyed by children and adults and has been made into movies.
I guess the moral would be don’t give up and work hard. Stay focused on the right things. Do your level best.
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