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October 17, 2013 / Dale Melchin

Three Reasons Why It is Important to Go down Swinging When Faced with Failure

So many times we look at a failure or a setback as final, at least I know I have had that tendency.  You need to be able to look at setbacks and failures as a fluid part of reality and not something static.  The only thing that makes you a failure is if you resign yourself to that state and never get back on the horse.

The September 29th 2013 Bears Game is a great example of this.  The Bears and the Lions were tied up in the First Quarter 3-3.  In the 2nd Quarter, the Bears Defense failed and so did the offense, putting the score at 30-13 Lions, creating a wide margin against the Bears.  The 3rd the Bears kicked back in and the Offense was able to score some points putting them at 16-37 Lions.  In case you were wondering I was starting to get worried at this point.

In the 4th quarter the Bears Offense kicked back in, narrowing the gap to 32 40 for a final score.  Although the Bears did fight valiantly in the end, it wasn’t enough.  In my opinion it was a more respectable loss than the alternative.  And they ended the game graciously as well.

Now, that was a long introduction, here are the three reasons why it is important to go down swinging when face with failure.

 

It builds character turning failure into an immediate success

This is often difficult to see especially if the failure has do with business or economic concerns.  When I was a painter if I didn’t get a client I was often frustrated because I was bootstrapping the business and every appointment had to count.  My tendency as the time was to mourn the loss and it was difficult for me to pick apart why it happened, and it would create spill over into my other interactions.

Now the appropriate course of action is to look at the situation and to ask where did it go off the rails?  Often times, the offering wasn’t compelling enough, they were just fishing for prices, or they wanted it done cheap because they felt they could do the same job for less cost.  Also, learning to handle no leads you to be able handle rejection across the board.

 

You might end up winning in a way you didn’t expect. 

This is aside from the character building element.  Had the Bears had more time or ran their offense more efficiently they may have been able to force overtime.  In business, if you demonstrate the value of your product persuasively and you demonstrate that you are not taking it personally, that person may end up calling you back to actually do the project.  Or they may even giving you a referral.

You gain wisdom from the experience of loss

Often times, this is unexpected win.  You understand what it is you need to adjust to get better.  This applies not just in business but it also applies in life change.  If you do end up getting into the cookie jar when you are trying to lose weight, you may figure out what the trigger event was and empower yourself to avoid that trigger or change the event that the trigger caused, setting the stage for forming a new habit.

The reality is there is no setback or failure that is final or could be overcome.  The only two setbacks that are final are if you chose to make it final or in extreme cases death. So keep going!  If you are still breathing and moving you can make changes to your life and get to where you know you need to go!

 

Question: What would going down swinging make possible for you?

 

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