12 Things To Do When You Feel Like A Failure

The most important lesson you can learn is to fail forward.

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Don’t you hate it when it appears some people are successful at everything they do while you struggle, and it seems that you fail at just about everything you try?

Some people are content with just maintaining the status quo, while to others it seems they cannot get ahead no matter what they do, which leaves them feeling like a failure.

Here are 12 things to do when you feel like a failure.

1. Decide that failure does not define you.

There needs to be a resolve that failure is just refining you to get better. It is easy to feel like nothing works because the economy is up and down, and some people thrive while you may feel like you are spinning your wheels. There are cycles to the economy, and understanding that you may be in a down cycle can give you some resolve that things can get better if you just persevere.


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2. Feel good about the fact that you tried to create something better for yourself.

The reality of a loss can be something for you to build upon in the future. When you try to do something to change your life, there is a passion that goes along with it. Those feelings you felt when you thought you were going to succeed are worth seeking again, and you should strive to find ways to do that.


3. Know that failure causes you to adapt and adjust.

Being adaptable to change and having a flexible attitude makes you a success in and of itself. Successful people adapt and change, and when a loss causes a setback they simply move onto another area. The loss of a job, for example, may force you to look for one that might be better than the one you had.

4. Understand that coping with loss and taking some time to re-group is a good thing.

Rest a bit before you delve into your next idea. Taking a break and clearing your mind can be a recipe for future success. Sometimes it is necessary to create a change of scenery or a vacation to heal the “animal spirits” within you.

5. Recognize that failure can help you to assess the risks you took when trying to make a positive change.

Taking reasonable risks and goal setting can also be a recipe for success. A loss can teach you that you may have taken too great a risk, and it can help you to reassess and keep your aspirations more realistic, or help you realize that the risk you took was not great enough. If you think small, you can fall; so you might just have to think big or go home.

RELATED: 16 Experts Share Their #1 Most Effective Way To Overcome Failure


6. Critically review your last “adventure.” It may give you some clues on how to make your next one better.

The “reality check” may just give you some “aha” moments that can be priceless next time. Consider the projects and ideas that did work. Your desire to get better may cause you to dissect the things that did work in your life. Determine the conditions and skills you used to win in the past. You may learn you overlooked something that was a valuable ingredient that can be used in the future.

7. Seek advice from others who may have had similar experiences.

They may give you some ideas that you have not considered on your own. Seeking a mentor, in some cases, can aid in overcoming a loss. Learning is never a bad thing. Seeking legal advice, a partner, or someone with more experience in an area of interest can be helpful. Is there a model of success that exists elsewhere for you to emulate?

8. Find the resources needed to succeed.

Look for new resources through new contacts, new materials, and financing. Others may be able to help you with more than just moral support. Losses often occur when there is a lack of the necessary resources to create a successful outcome. You must not let that happen again, so next time you will need to get whatever it takes to make your project work. Planning, creating, or obtaining resources, and having discipline are part of your future success.

9. Have faith in yourself to succeed, even if failure hurts your self-esteem.

Part of your reality check must be a self-confidence check, as well. If you do not believe in yourself, then no one else will. The worst part of failure is the possibility of losing faith in yourself. If this happens, the chance of success is minimal. A high opinion of yourself allows you to withstand obstacles that are sure to happen with any project or relationship.


RELATED: How To Leverage Your Failures And Turn It Into Success

10. Stop worrying about what others think of you.

This can only delay you from trying again in another area. If you have not attempted to swindle or defraud someone, you should be okay. There is no shame in failing, but if you allow others to make you feel like you are not a successful person, then it can lower your chances of getting back on your feet. Let others know your loss is just temporary, and worry less about what they think.

11. Incorporate your ability to make new friends or join groups into your strategy for success.

Moral support from friends or a trusted group is a valuable resource. Creating an environment for success is another ingredient that successful people use to their advantage. You might just need some new friends or groups of people to support you. You should try to orient yourself around positive people, places, or groups.

12. Reflect after a loss or failure, but don't stop dreaming of or imagining a better life.

Visualizing where you want to be is an essential part of success. The danger of failure is becoming complacent or engaging in negative behaviors that can do more harm than the loss that you suffered. Turning failure into success may not be easy, but the rewards are great. Those rewards cannot be realized unless you continue to have new ideas and keep trying to make them work.


Failure is part of life; without it, you can never get better. Whether it is in business, personal aspirations, or a relationship, losses cause you to re-evaluate, re-assess, and re-emerge stronger, but it is up to you to do it. Keep trying and showing the world what you can accomplish.

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John Cappello, M.B. A., is a practicing psychic medium, astrologer, radio talk show host, and author of metaphysical books and children’s books about angels.