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Failure Precedes Success!

Aug 17, 2007
There is this Chinese Saying that literally translates to "Failure Is The Mother Of Success!". Basically, it means that failure is like a mother who will give birth to success. A more proper way to phrase it will be failure precedes success. Usually, it is use to encourage someone who have just encountered a failure or setback in life. It helps to remind the person that one will definitely need to go through the experience of failures before one can succeed.

Though I heard of this saying numerous times during my upbringing, I never really realized the full meaning of the saying. Actually, there is another way to interpret the saying. If I want to succeed quickly, I need to experience as many failures as possible in the shortest possible time.

Why? Each failure is due to a mistake or a combination of mistakes. If I can learn from my mistakes, I will improve in whatever I am trying doing. When I experience failure faster, it simply means that I have made mistakes quicker. This gives me the opportunity to learn from my mistakes earlier. And I will improve faster. At this fast rate of learning from mistakes, my success will be nearer.

This reminds me of my experience on trying to learn to ride a bicycle while I was a teenager. Of course, I did not manage to balance myself on the very first attempt. In fact, I had lost my balance numerous times and injured myself. But I did not give up because I knew that I was improving with each failed attempt. This is because I was learning from my mistakes.

Somewhere along my life, I have forgotten about this simple principle that in order to success, I need to go through failures and learn from my mistakes. Like everyone else, I have my dreams. But I am afraid to pursue my dreams because I am afraid of failure. This fear of failure causes me to procrastinate on pursuing my dreams. If I had recalled that principle early, I would have taken actions to pursue my dreams sooner. How did I manage to remember this principle again? Well, the Rich Dad series reminded me of such a principle.

Why does understanding that principle help me to overcome the fear of failure? Basically, there is a shift in perception on the value of failure. I used to associate failure with no value or negative value.
If I fail in whatever I am trying to do, people will look down on me. That is how I perceive failure. With the paradigm shift that failure benefit me positively so that I can succeed faster, the fear of failure is reduced.

Other than the paradigm shift, I have adopted additional steps to enhance my chance of success in whatever I am trying to achieve. Firstly, I will focus on my goal instead of my fears. If my goal is to learn ice-skating, I do not focus on the dangers of falling and injuring myself. That is I do not imagine the fears of falling and the pains from the injuries before they have really happened. Instead, I focus on mastering the skill properly so that I do not fall and injure myself.

Secondly, I leverage on my past success experience. If I can successful perform a fire walking, then I definitely can master ice-skating since fire walking is a much difficult task. Well, if you do not have such a special experience like fire walking, what can you leverage on? The answer is the mastery of walking. It is a common success experience that everyone can leverage on except the handicap.

Have you ever wonder how you had mastered walking as a child? Can you recall that? Walking is a difficult skill to master as a child. But we have done it through trials and errors with the encouragement of our parents and loved ones. Since we can learn to walk, we definitely can learn other skills or do other difficult tasks if we put our heart and mind into doing so.

Thirdly, I will leverage on the experience of people who had already mastered it or done it before. The best way is to get a coach to guide and teach me. But if I cannot find a coach, then the next best alternative is learned from books, videos and audio courses.

Lastly, I will come out with an actionable plan with quantified milestones to measure my progress. By constantly checking my progress against my plan, I will be forced to reflect on my actions. What have I done incorrectly that causes the delay in my progress? What can I do to correct the situation?

With all the above steps in place, my fear of failure is greatly reduced. My chance of success is greatly enhanced.

The author, publisher and distributors particularly disclaim any liability, loss, or risk taken by individuals who directly or indirectly act on the information contained herein. All readers must accept full responsibility for their use of this material.
About the Author
Max Ng shares about his struggle for financial freedom at http://www.richdadsecrets4me.com
Get a free sample of his book "Your Greatest Gift! Why Waste It?" at http://www.yourgreatestgift.com
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