No one is perfect all of the time. Just as making mistakes is a part of life, so is learning to cope with mistakes or failure. Here are some tips that may help you do just that.
Allow Yourself to Feel
Failure can bring up some uncomfortable emotions, but you won't be doing yourself any favors by denying them. Acknowledge your feelings, talk about them, and treat yourself with the same compassion and non-judgment you likely do for others in your life when they mess up. Sometimes it isn't easy talking about emotions. Our Confidant providers are here to help you express your feelings, so you can work through them and move on.
Notice the Feelings Failure Triggers
Failure or fear of failure can trigger a variety of emotions and even physical symptoms. Notice which feelings tend to arise when you make mistakes or worry you might make them. Is it fear of judgment? Diminished self-worth? Anxiety about possibly getting in trouble or being judged? How do you feel physically? Do you feel the tension in your body or the sensation of knots in your stomach? Recognizing and naming all of these sensations can help you identify and accept your feelings.
Adjust Your Expectations
Reassess what you expect from both yourself and others. Are your expectations realistic? No one can do everything right every time. Mistakes happen to everyone -- it makes us human. It’s OK to make mistakes and learn from them for next time.
Be Honest With Yourself
Be realistic about your role, the role of others, and external factors. Recognize that there are factors you have no control over. You'll be less inclined to put the blame entirely on yourself -- or entirely on someone else -- if things don't go as planned. Blame is a stress-related reaction, and it usually doesn't get you anywhere.
Own Your Mistakes
We all make them. Acknowledge your mistakes and forgive yourself for them with self-compassion. If you're able to learn from your mistakes, you can build genuine confidence by permitting yourself to fail.
Live in Line With Your Values
Try never to lose sight of your values. Recognize what's most important to you and focus on those values, and mistakes won’t matter as much in the big picture. Focus on what you believe in most strongly, and you likely will fear others’ judgment less.
Don’t Compare Yourself to Others.
Other people can be a great source of inspiration, but don’t forget that you are your own person with your own special qualities. When admiring someone else, try not to fall into the trap of comparing yourself to them and using it as an opportunity to put yourself down. Practice noticing and appreciating what you do well already.
We all want to be successful. But to get there, you have to take chances, which sometimes means mistakes will happen. Learning to bounce back from your failures is a skill that can help you on your journey.