Failing to Succeed

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Before I start, my intention is for this to be a word of encouragement and a closer look at one of the most common character flaws we all share as human beings. I would like to personally challenge all of you to take a good long look in the mirror and be honest with yourself. Consider this a reality check or a look at the cold hard truth which is vital for any of us trying to achieve personal and professional growth.

This week I’d like to share some thoughts on self-belief or self-image and how it effects our overall confidence. What is it exactly? It’s the little voice inside our heads that will either push us along and help foster growth OR its that same voice that will become the enabler in our lives that will directly correlate to our overall lack of action and success. It’s that same voice that will tell us whether or not we can achieve a certain task or goal.

It’s the ability to remain unemotional, clear and concise with your decision making (regardless of what the “voice” is saying), and the choice to push through the many challenges and conditions we will inevitably encounter throughout the course of our day to day grind. It’s also being comfortable with who we are as people, what we do, the skills we have, and how it projects into reality.

Do you stay focused on your goals and expectations at hand or do you get bogged down and enabled by all the “noise” and distractions in life? It’s as simple as…….Oh I’ll do it later or tomorrow there’s plenty of time. I’ll get back to that person. I’m just not very good at that. It doesn’t work for me so why bother. I’ll never reach my goals. I don’t have time. I don’t stand a chance against him/her. It won’t make a big difference. Does any of this sound familiar? Sure it does! And it’s universal to us all.

The end result of these individual statements or choices may appear harmless on the surface but inevitably these collective choices become habit over time which then dictates your overall productivity and growth. What a lot of people fail to see is that our response to every situation, condition, and circumstance that we encounter is a “choice”. Even when bad things happen to us we can “choose” how we will let it effect us. Essentially that “little voice” creates a cat and mouse game in our head that can quickly become the worst enabler in our lives…..that is if we let it.

But I still rack my brain to know……what truly is the cause of such a passive and cavalier attitude towards the many important choices in our life? Believe it or not……most of us are afraid to fail. We are scared to death to allow failure in our life which then leads to that “voice” telling us that we can’t do certain things and as a result………NOTHING ever gets done. We don’t even give ourself a chance. Instead, we quit all together to avoid failure, shame, or the feelings of embarrassment that might come with it. I’ve done it. You’ve done it. We’ve all done it. What’s worst is that most of us know when this is happening but we continue to just let it happen because let’s be honest……. it’s the easier and safer decision to just avoid it all together. Why worry about losing…..I just won’t play the game!

I’m sorry folks but this is unacceptable behavior. I don’t mean to be so harsh but why do we let ourselves become our own worst enemy and get in our own way? I can understand if we’re talking about a growing child or teenager who is still trying to figure out who they are as people and ultimately their place in this world. I can understand the lack of discipline and knowledge. But for us adults…….why do we allow ourselves to talk ourselves out of some of the most important decisions that could shape our future or directly impact our happiness? We know what we want…..we know what needs to be done to get there…….so why not just do it?

Are you too comfortable?

Are you afraid of failing?

Is the task at hand too difficult?

Are you listening to what “others” have to say?

Regardless of what the real feeling is at that time……most of them are excuses. Excuses that enable our minds to deal with the fact that we’re avoiding the task while ultimately letting ourselves down. We’re refusing to act based upon the fear of failure or rejection. We’re failing our own character and we’re failing to grow as people.

Did you know the ones who fail most often are generally the ones who becomes the most successful? As I’m sure many of you have heard, it’s called failing forward or learning from our mistakes. From failure we learn, grow, and push the boundaries of our abilities. On the far side of failure you’ll find much success.

Here are some “Famous Failures” to point out:

Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team his sophomore year.

Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper editor because he lacked imagination and had no good ideas. Several more of his businesses failed before the premiere of his movie Snow White.

The first time Jerry Seinfeld went onstage, he was booed away by the jeering crowd.

Oprah Winfrey was fired from her television reporting job because they told her she wasn’t fit to be on screen.

Dr. Seuss’ first book was rejected by 27 different publishers.

Fear is ok. A little bit of fear can actually help spur us along and give us the motivation to really “bring it” per say. But to let it completely remove you from the game because we’re too scared……….that is something I vow to never let happen. What if we can get out of our own way and stay focused on the logical plans and tasks we know must be done in order to achieve true happiness and success?

However daunting a task may appear I can promise you it’s alway worth a try because the sense of accomplishment and personal satisfaction you feel on the other side of a task can be pretty amazing, regardless if you fail or succeed. At least you can look yourself in the mirror and know you gave it your best shot. You can respect yourself for the effort and chances are you probably learned something too. As a result we tend to have more confidence for having endured this “difficult’ task.

Building these traits are not only essential to the business of real estate but also to us as people. Like anything in life……”self belief” and “confidence” are traits that are practiced and learned over time. It’s staying consistent and disciplined. It’s challenging yourself and stepping outside of your comfort zone. It’s taking some ownership and responsibility for the results in your life. It’s looking fear in the face and having the courage to take a chance. For some this can be easy but for the vast majority it needs to be intentional. Also, there MUST be application and/or ACTION to yield growth.

I would like to encourage you all to take more chances. Have confidence in yourself. Be positive. Be proactive. Try things. Step outside your comfort zone. Embrace failure as your road to growth. Alway learn and improve your position. Take action. Stay focused. Shut down that “negative” voice in your head and learn to ignore the “noise” of the world.

Lastly…..lean on the people around you. Set goals and be verbal about them. Discuss them often. Practice accountability. I know my inner circle always challenges me to be a better person. A better dad. A better husband. A better broker. And a better human being for that matter. I can say with confidence that I experience growth every single day of my life……..can you say the same?????

Quote I leave you with this week:

“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” – Nelson Mandela

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