Failure is The Mother of Success: How to Overcome Failure and Succeed

Think about some of the most successful people in the world.

What do they all have in common?

They’ve all failed countless times.

Failure is a part of life and an even bigger part of success. It’s something we all have to face at some point.

But it’s not something we have to let stop us from achieving our goals. Failure is the mother of success if we learn from it and use it to our advantage.

What Does Failure is The Mother of Success Mean?

“Failure is the mother of success” is an ancient Chinese proverb.

[snippet]It means every failure you experience provides an opportunity to learn and find success, while knowing what does not work is just as important as finding out what does work.[/snippet]

You learn from your failures.

At some point, we all experience it, so learn from your failures and grow. Get better at what you do, and progress towards your goals. Many of us know this is what we should be doing.

Understanding this isn’t the hardest thing in the world, yet we lose our motivation to press forward when failure strikes. 

We give up instead of learning and trying again.

Why Do We Fear Failure So Much?

We fear failure because of how it feels.

Failure can be embarrassing, frustrating, and demoralizing. No one wants to be unsuccessful; we all want to succeed and win.

We want to feel smart, competent, and capable. When we fail, it can shake our self-confidence, and when we’re not confident, we feel powerless.

When we don’t believe in ourselves, failure becomes even more terrifying.

But, it’s not only about failing though. It’s also about how we interpret failure and what we decide to do when we come up short.

So, if you’re afraid of failure, or if your confidence takes a hit after experiencing loss, remind yourself of this:

“I am human, and I make mistakes. This is how I learn, grow, and get closer to my goals.”

Nobody’s perfect. 

Every single one of us fails on some level every day. Failures are not the end of the line for you. Failure is the mother of success.

If you don’t experience failure at some point in life, you’re not trying hard enough or taking enough risks. You need failure just as much as you need and want to succeed.

Why Failure is The Mother of Success

Failure is the mother of success because failure has driven many people to succeed. Many successful people have fallen and gotten back up.

They keep going.

Failure has also produced many great inventions and ground-breaking discoveries. All of them result from people attempting and failing something for the first, second, or ten thousandth time if you were Thomas Edison, the light bulb inventor.

Thomas Edison Quote

Edison reportedly tried (and failed) 10,000 times before finding a way to invent the light bulb.

He’s even famously quoted saying, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

And many other recognizable people experienced failure leading to success as long as they kept trying, like Thomas Edison.

Famous Failures:

  • Walt Disney was fired from his job at a newspaper early in his career because they said he lacked imagination and had no good ideas.
  • Oprah Winfrey was fired from an early job as a television news anchor.
  • The founder of Honda interviewed for an engineering job at Toyota, and they said he didn’t have the necessary skills to work at the company.
  • Elon Musk and SpaceX’s first rocket launch exploded and many more after.
  • And it took James Dyson five years and 5,127 prototypes to create the world’s first bagless vacuum cleaner, the Dyson vacuum.

Yes, failing sucks, but as I have shown above, you’re not alone when it comes to failure. 

Failure is a stepping stone.

All of these famous people and countless more have failed. Their failure is what drove them to the success we know and praise them for.

It’s what made them an icon and shows that failing is typical, for failure is the mother of success. So, don’t be so hard on yourself when and if you fail.

Instead, keep failing forward because you’re probably one failure away from the success you desire.

“The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”Nelson Mandela

With Great Failure Comes Great Success

The failures, troubles, and setbacks we encounter are helping us find wisdom that comes from experience.

That’s what failure is, experience.

Avoiding failure is impossible, and failure often happens when we least expect it. Shit happens, setbacks occur, and failure is inevitable.

It’s madness to think anything you do or the good ideas you have will be perfect the first time around.

You’re just not going to be a master and have complete knowledge of how to do something on your first try. It will take more than one, hundreds, and in some cases thousands of attempts before you master something.    

And there’s nothing wrong with that.

Mastery is The Result of Failing Over and Over Again

The process of mastering anything in life requires failure.

You need to get comfortable failing over and over again without it discouraging you from continuing the pursuit of mastery. It’s a process.

This Goes For:

  • Learning how to draw
  • Fixing and repairing things
  • Building or creating anything
  • Learning how to play an instrument
  • Mastering any trade (carpentry, mechanics, computer repair)
  • Becoming a world-class athlete

And the list goes on. The point is you need to remain confident and optimistic.

Getting good at anything requires you to say “I suck, but I’m going to keep practicing and someday I’m going to be awesome!”

Learn to Accept Failure

Failure is feedback. There is something special about failure that you will never receive from success.

Failure gives birth to success and keeps us out of our comfort zone.

The more you fail, the closer you’ll get to succeeding, and if you continue to fail (which is an action in itself), success will occur.

So, accept failure.

Use it as a building block, and move on with your work and life. Don’t give up because your persistence will pay off.

Success is, of course, more gratifying than failure.

But failure always presents an opportunity to learn and better yourself. You have to be flexible and open-minded when working towards something.

The great General Colin Powell sums it up best when he states “There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure”.

Who Said Failure is The First Step to Success?

People have been asking this question for quite some time.  

And the answer is, no one knows.

Many say it’s Benjamin Franklin, but there is no proof he said this. William Whewell stated, “every failure is a step to success.”

Some people say it’s a Latin proverb that no one can trace. Still, others think the quote comes from an ancient Chinese proverb all in Chinese symbols, but no one knows what those symbols mean.

The point is, there isn’t much proof for anyone being the first to say failure leads to success unless you have something to prove it.

So, don’t worry about who said it because no one knows for sure.

How Failure Leads to Success

Many people fear failure, but “failure is a necessary step towards success.”- Zig Ziglar

Many of us may not understand the importance of failing to be successful, and we’ll do everything within our power to avoid it. With this mindset, we are working against ourselves. Why?

When you believe failure is the enemy, there’s a good chance you’ll avoid pursuing new things because of that fear. You won’t try or continue with something even if it could lead to your success because you’re afraid failure could happen.

But failure is a necessary step towards success. You cannot succeed without failing first! If you want to be successful, start embracing failure. Failures get you out of your comfort zone and lead you to new perspectives.

This is straightforward, but it’s something many people don’t get, and the outcome is them missing out on opportunities to learn and grow.

And as a result, they end up delaying their success.

Think of the things you’ve failed at once upon a time. Maybe you wanted to learn how to ride a bike, but you fell. Or perhaps you wanted to do well in school but failed.

These are opportunities where failure gives you the chance to learn what does and doesn’t work. When you know what doesn’t, it’s easier for you to succeed the next time around. It’s the same with everything else in life.

Each time you fail, you can learn something new that can help propel you, your goals, and your dreams forward.

How Can You Go From Failure to Success?

You must realize failure is not the end of the world.

Yes, it’s disappointing, but it doesn’t have to be devastating if you know how to handle it correctly.

The first step is to take a deep breath and try not to cry because that won’t help anything. The second one is just as important: don’t give up.

We all have dreams and ambitions, but they won’t come easy.

It’s okay to be disappointed, but letting that disappointment get you down and make you give up on your dream is not the way. You have to keep trying, even if it doesn’t work the first time.

This is how people succeed in life: by failing and then getting back up.

They don’t quit. That is key.

Instead, they make a plan to get better and try again. So, as long as you keep trying and never quit, failure will lead to success, even if it’s just one step closer.

Successful People Are Human – They Fail Just Like You

Success is something that everyone can achieve.

Successful people have some characteristics in common: they work hard, take responsibility for their actions, get along well with others, and are optimistic.

They also know achieving success requires setting goals, establishing priorities, and, most importantly, taking action.

They look for opportunities in every situation and set high expectations for themselves, but when they don’t meet them, they try again.

Failing is a big part of their journey to success, and they aren’t afraid to fail. They fail just as much as anyone else.

The difference is that they fail fast, learn quickly and try again.

Michael Jordan is a great example. He is one of the best players in NBA history, if not THE best. Although he didn’t play well in his last game, Jordan said it was “the way I wanted to go out.”

I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times I’ve been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life and that is why I succeed.

This is how successful people handle failure: they don’t succeed at something, learn from what happened, and move on.

They don’t let failure destroy their dreams, future, or drive because failure brings them one step closer and is the mother of success.

7 Tips for Dealing With Failure

Failure Leads to Success
  1. Analyze why you failed
  2. Ask for feedback
  3. Make a plan of action that’ll help prevent the same failure
  4. Take action
  5. Re-evaluate your plan after taking action
  6. Rinse and repeat if failure is still an issue
  7. Don’t give up! Keep trying

Failure is the mother of success.

We all fail at something, whether in business, school, relationships, or anything else.

The key to success isn’t avoiding failure; it’s learning how to deal with the loss and making the most out of failure when it occurs.

How to Stay Motivated When You’re Struggling

If you want to stay motivated when you’re struggling, it’s important to remember failure is an opportunity.

It’s how we learn and what pushes us forward.

If you’re struggling, don’t let it discourage you. Instead, see it as an opportunity to grow stronger and prepare for your next challenge.

When you’re struggling, you need to make time for things that lead to the outcome you seek.

This includes making time to rest and recharge while also surrounding yourself with positive people who can help inspire you when you need it.

If you need some outside perspective on your struggles, why not ask a friend or family member for help?

They can provide you with some clarity on your situation and give you the support you need.

Just don’t let failure stop you from pushing forward.

Fall, Get Up, and Then Move On to Achieve Success

Failure is a natural part of life and something all successful people have gone through.

Setbacks occur. Everyone fails. Failure is the key to success. 

What makes someone successful is their ability to get back up and keep trying.

We all have to experience the pain of failure at some point. We’ll do something for one reason or another, and things won’t turn out as well as we expected. Things don’t always go our way.

This is a good thing!

It means there’s room for improvement and learning to be done from our mistakes.

Every time you try your hand at something new, you learn what works and what doesn’t work. Once you know that, you’ll be able to apply it in the future.

It’s like learning the rules of a game and then learning to win by playing within those rules. You don’t win every time, but your chances of winning improve.

They improve because you’ve learned what now works.

The people who win at life embrace this and failure as their friend. It’s there to make them stronger and teach them how to succeed by learning.

All successful people have failed before they were successful.

So, keep going…

Failure isn’t the end of the world. It’s just a bump in the road my friend.

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