In this blog post, you’ll find out why failure is key to success and get seven ways to use failure to succeed (rather than letting it hold you back & cause you to doubt yourself).

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts.”

Winston Churchill

This success quote by Winston Churchill makes the point that just failing at something will not kill us (even though the idea of it might scare us). It reminds us that it’s about overcoming the fear and trying anyway, more than anything. 

And, the most successful people in history have believed this way. They’ve often said and showed that failing is okay, that it builds our character, and even that it helps us get to success. After all, without failing there would be no success.

So remember that failure is an important part of your success journey, and try not to let it hold you back. Many of us often hold ourselves back because we’re afraid of failing, but if we can just change our mindset around this we might be amazed at what we can accomplish.

Now, let’s discuss all of this more so you can move forward un-afraid on your success journey!

(There may be affiliate links in this article that I can receive a commission from. I’ll only include those I find helpful!)

Why failure is key to success

First, let’s talk about why failure is key to success.

Have you ever had someone basically tell you not to dream too big, or act like trying something would be stupid? I know I have, and it’s pretty eye opening to just sit back and watch.

When you really look at it without emotion, you can clearly see that the critical person doesn’t see failure as a road to success. If they did see failure as part of the journey to success, they wouldn’t act so scared of someone going after something that might involve a little failing along the way.

The truth is, there would most certainly not be much success or improvement in our world without some failure. So when you start doubting yourself, remember this. And when you have that nervous, scared stomach about a new thing, remember that it’s just part of it.

Realize that being a little scared to fail is normal. We all struggle with starting something new at times, or even with dreaming big for fear that we won’t ever be able to accomplish it. But, know that you can overcome this and rise to the occasion.

You can learn to quiet the fear inside and embrace possibilities. Sure, the fear may still be there. But you will learn to move forward anyway.

7 Ways to use failure to succeed

Here are seven ways to use failure to succeed, rather than letting it hold you back.

#1 Let failure build up your resilience

Our first tip is to let failure build up your resilience.

Resilience is one of the reasons why failure is good for success. You see, on your way from failure to success you’ll fail a lot, but that’s okay. You want to keep trying and failing, because it builds resilience. 

Resilience means life can throw anything at you, and you’ll still make it through. Do you give up easily? If so, don’t. Practice being resilient instead.

There are many people who grew up with less than ideal circumstances, but some will push through and create great, happy lives for themselves anyway. And, of course, some will do the opposite. Why is this? 

Perhaps part of it is how we look at things and then how we react to things. So choose to look at things in a different way – to be resilient and make something good out of things that maybe aren’t so good.

#2 Let failure help you improve yourself

Our second tip is to let failure help you improve yourself.

The saying says “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again”. Well, that’s exactly what those that went from failure to success did! They succeeded because they failed.

Ironic, I know. But, when you really look closely you see that it’s true.

Major inventions and great discoveries normally come with lots of trial and error first, lots of failing. So, what would make us think that failing is bad? Why should we feel bad for failing at something?

We should be proud when we’ve tried a lot and because of that failed a lot. It means we’re that much closer to figuring it out or mastering whatever it is!

So, don’t be hard on yourself when things don’t work out right away. You know that voice that tells you everyone’s thinking you’re a loser and other negative things? Tell it to stand down. Say I don’t accept that. Tell yourself at least you’re trying and that trying is how success is found.

We were taught that if we failed on a test it was bad – often taught to believe failing is bad. But, it’s time to reframe this so that we can get past beating ourselves down and instead rise to our true potential!

#3 Keep trying & let failure build up your confidence

Our third tip is to keep trying and let failure build up your confidence.

Believe it or not, as you fail but keep trying you’re actually building self confidence. That is, if you really keep trying and don’t give up.

A part of you will recognize that you’re getting mentally stronger and are continuing to work on things despite how hard they are. And, what an awesome feeling it is!

I’ve had times in life when I didn’t stay persistent and keep trying at what really mattered. And, I’ve had times when I didn’t give up at what mattered most to me.

So I can tell you from experience that it does help your confidence, because it helps change how you see yourself. And, how we see ourselves is a game changer!

#4 Let failure teach you all it can

Our fourth tip is to let failure teach you all it possibly can.

The truth is that you can always learn something from failure, so failing is fine. And, we have to learn to get anywhere in life or to reach any goal.

Just reflect on what you can take away from the “failure” or experience to improve your future, and nothing is wasted.

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And, make it a learning experience! It may seem difficult at first, but there’s always something you can learn from an experience that didn’t quite go the way you wanted it to.

Just remember that we learn through failure and that failure is key to success. In fact, without failure there would probably be no success, because no one is just born perfect with all the answers.

#5 Let failure build you up

Our fifth tip is to let failure build you up!

You may need to build self confidence and realize that failure says nothing at all about you as a person. That’s right, nothing at all.

I want you to think about how you hold yourself around others and how you feel around others, because this could be a clue of what you need to work on.

For example, if you’ve gone through a lot like I have you might need to lift your head higher. I say this because sometimes without realizing it we can start looking down on ourselves, perhaps for not living up to our own standards. And, partly for how we feel others think of us.

But, remember that your supposed failures in the past say nothing about who you really are. You’re much more than just your experiences in life and their results. 

So, look deeper into who you really are. Find things to love about yourself!

It might even be difficult at first to list things that you love about yourself, especially if you’ve been through a lot. But, keep trying.

And, definitely don’t let your past failures affect how much you attempt to do now! It’s important to keep going and to do whatever you can to build self confidence, because it makes a difference.

#6 Let failure teach you to control your mind

Our sixth tip is to let failure teach you to control your mind.

The mind is a powerful thing and if you can learn to control it instead of it controlling you, you’ll be able to do a lot more!

For example, people that went from failure to success didn’t get paralyzed by fear of failure. But, don’t kid yourself and think that these people are just different and have no fears – not true at all.

We all have fears. It’s just about how much we let them control our lives.

So, will you let a little nervousness or discomfort keep you from the success or things you’re meant to have? Will you let a fear of what others might think of you, for failing and continuing to try, hold you back?

I hope not, because it’s really just a mindset thing.  And, you can do more than you probably even realize you can do!

Just remember that you can go from failure to success if you don’t let your fear of failure or anything else control you. Change your mindset to one that knows that failure is key to success and is just part of the process.

#7 Let failure teach you how to never give up

Our seventh tip is to let failure teach you how to never give up.

Sometimes we get discouraged after failing, because we think it was all a waste. But failures are never wasted, because we and others can learn from these experiences. And, we learn and grow from seeing ourselves and others not giving up.

So, do you keep trying or easily give up? How do you handle these let downs in life, and how could you maybe handle them better? These are good things to reflect on and use for growth.

Next time you want to quit but know in your gut you shouldn’t, remind yourself that not giving up is important and that this is a learning and growing opportunity.

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When you push through and don’t quit you’re teaching yourself and others resilience, which is the true key to success. You’re teaching yourself and others to never give up. (I do want to note, though, that there’s a difference between giving up and redirecting. And, sometimes we do need to redirect.)

I also find it fascinating how inventors have been able to create so much in past years, to where now we can live in such a comfortable and advanced world! But, do you realize that many of those inventions were built upon prior knowledge that others passed down? Or, you could say on prior failures.

They took what others had already learned and built on it to make something that was new or even better.

They actually say if you want to learn something new it’s best to learn from someone who has already been through it – they can share what worked and what didn’t so that you get to success faster!

So the next time you want to learn something new, remember that. Also remember that there are others watching who can learn a lot from seeing you keep going despite the challenges.

Always try to look at failure in a positive way. See what you learned, try something new, and keep moving forward!

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Look at things positively (with a good attitude) and never give up, and the Universe will yield to your dreams when the time is right.

Closing thoughts: Failure is key to success – How to use failure to succeed

Now, we’ve covered why failure is key to success and seven ways to use failure to succeed.

Just remember that it’s also about who we become during the process and that it’s not just about reaching success. And, remember that failing can actually be a good thing (like steering you in a new direction) and build character!

Let’s review.

7 Reasons why failure is key to success:

  • Failure builds up resilience
  • It helps us improve ourselves
  • Failure builds up confidence
  • Failure is a learning experience
  • Failure teaches us about ourselves
  • It teaches us to control our minds
  • It can teach us about not giving up

I hope all of this has helped you and built you up so that you can go out there and continue trying. Never give up, and always believe in yourself and in possibilities!

Additional resources

If you liked this blog post on why failure is key to success, you might also be interested in my post called Waiting Patiently for Success & Wealth So It Can Come. In it I use a well known fable & six points to inspire you while you’re waiting for success, or while you wait to accomplish anything at all.

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