Would you take advice from a failure? I’m going to guess that some of you responded with a resounding NO! People with low self esteem, and it seems from my practice, particularly women with low self esteem hate it when they fail or make a mistake. This is even more true for women in business.

My intention is that you will dramatically change your perception of “failure” by the end of our short time together here. This isn’t just one of those women issues, as anyone can suffer from this perception, but this bit of information is for women to help women.

When a person is in low self esteem, making a mistake only amplifies an existing sense of blame and disapproval. To them, a mistake is only proof that they are “less than”. They may even be in denial of what really happened and may feel they have something to hide, even from themselves. These people can be very self defensive or destructive to themselves or even destructive and harmful to others.

To compound that loss, they also don’t avail themselves of a fantastic and timely leaning opportunity; they get no useful and positive feedback and not much chance of making a change for the better. In fact, they are probably condemned to repeat the same past mistakes, right?

Why? It’s human nature for someone still struggling with emotional mastery and self esteem issues to ruminate on or even gloss over a failure. Besides getting stuck in feeling badly, they are missing so much good feedback because they don’t assess what went wrong with the intentions of learning so that they can do better next time!

In my other life before coaching and training, we would hold postmortem meetings after an IT change. It means the same as an autopsy - - a thoughtful analysis at the end of the project to access what happened. Invaluable information! Provided by the experts - - the people on the scene. What value could you take from the IT experts process?

Learning from your failures can and should be as informational and productive as learning from your successes. But only with this caveat: You need to examine your failures from the very same success mindset of thinking and behavior that gave you your successes!

So I coach my clients to do an assessment of their “failures” on a daily basis. This is much easier when you have a solid foundation of self worth and self esteem. From a foundation of self worth as a birthright, you can accept that making a mistake, or failing at something, is only human nature. We aren’t perfect and we will fail and we will make mistakes. In this light, failure only becomes feedback.

Having a strong and solid inner sense of self worth means that a failure or a mistake doesn’t define who you are. When you believe that you are still a good person, it’s simply feedback that you need to try something else to get the outcome that you want. You will stop equating your self worth and self esteem with making mistakes or not making mistakes.

A person that believes that they have 100% self worth as a birth right will see a mistake or a failure as an opportunity to learn how to do it better the next time. They can get right back up, dust their knees off, and get going again. They won’t beat themselves up because, after all, humans will make mistakes. Instead, they ask themselves what can I change to do it better the next time I encounter the same situation.

And here is a real plus: If they have harmed someone inadvertently, they will quickly apologize and make amends and hopefully save the relationship or at least their integrity. The best ointment on a hurting relationship is a sincere and honest apology. It’s easier to say I’m sorry, not only to others but to yourself too from a perception of having total self worth.

And there is the magic! If you can perceive of yourself from a standpoint of having worth first, you are more willing to look at your failures and mistakes and you are open to doing something positive about them.

So now, did this change your perception about taking advice from a failure? It has a whole different spin now, doesn’t it? When you have overcome low self esteem, or if you are overcoming low self esteem, you see your world from a different perspective. And . . . seeing the world from a different perspective helps overcome low self esteem and depression. You and you only are responsible for managing energy so that you “get” the magic of this compounding affect. Low self esteem compounds; high self esteem compounds. When you are sliding down the wrong end of the seesaw, reach out for women who help women!
I ask my clients to make a list of what didn’t work for them each day and to reflect on specifically what changes they can make to do it better the next time. There is no self condemnation allowed, only continual and incremental improvement. Being a totally worth while human being is what defines you, not your failures. Now, Failure is only feedback to help you do better next time.
And now here is a great quote from a guy that epitomizes success: Failure is success if we learn from it. Malcolm S. Forbes. If Malcolm Forbes saw his failures this way, and we know how successful and self confident he was, we all can learn from his self perception.

Author's Bio: 

Denise Pederson helps women feel good about themselves so they live and work at their highest potential by changing their self perception. If you are having difficulty with your self esteem or just want to strengthen yourself where you are at, please visit www.coach-companion.com for more information. Sign up for the free success tips. Pass them on to friends and loved ones. They will appreciate you for it.