How To Learn From Failure

Author Adidas Wilson
3 min readOct 12, 2020

It is said that failure is an amazing teacher. But if that is the case, why are so many people unable to gain knowledge from this supposedly “great teacher”? Why do people keep failing? The issue is that, although failure is an amazing teacher, it is a cryptic one as well.

It is not easy to obtain its lessons, especially when you are still lost in demoralization, disappointment, frustration, and nursing your bruised ego. Sometimes failure also comes with hopelessness, resentment, and embarrassment. To be able to benefit from your failure, you need to find a way to decipher the “teachable moments” that are hidden tactfully within failure.

You need a method to help you understand what the lessons are and how you can use them to improve your chances of a successful future. The guidelines below will enable you to assess your failures and find the specific issues that you have to correct as you pursue tasks and goals. You will need to do a lot of soul searching and thinking so do not hesitate to take some time to recover from the punch of a new failure before you start.

Reevaluate your planning: how long did it take you to plan the best way to attain your goal before you began? Did you think about the problems or hurdles that you might face and how you would overcome them? A big number of people barely spend time planning things like these even though unexpected obstacles are part of life. In the future, have a general strategy, think about potential setbacks and find a way to overcome them beforehand. Reevaluate your preparation: this step is a very crucial one but still, many people skip it.

For instance, think about someone who aspires to live a healthy life by joining a gym and attending at least three times per week. This plan can be easily shattered if the babysitter cancels last minute and there is no alternative. If there is a prepared backup plan for childcare, the parent would be able to attend gym more consistently and slide into the habit.

Another example is when someone begins a diet but does not get rid of unhealthy foods in the house to replace them with healthy ones. When making future plans, take measures that will increase your chances of success. Reevaluate your execution: were your efforts consistent? Were you lacking motivation and lagging in your work ethic? Go back and analyze when and why your efforts dropped.

Understand what circumstances led to the derailment of your efforts and know how you will address them should they occur in the future. Focus on the variables within your control: it is normal for failure to make you feel helpless and passive, leading you to believe that you may never succeed even if you try.

However, understand that these feelings are perceptual distortions. You have more control over situations than you realize. There is always something you can do to improve a situation such as being more knowledgeable, improving your network, or building relationships with potential clients.

Originally published at on October 12, 2020.

Author Adidas Wilson

Adidas Wilson was born in Chicago, surviving a near death experience driving off a bridge in an 18 wheeler and getting hit by a train. Author and Motivator