How would you like to always be successful at everything you do? I have some good news and some bad news. The bad news is you’re going to fail. It’s happened and it will always happen. The good news it that you’ve always been successful and will continue to be.
Failure is unavoidable because of uncertainty. Failure is not an option; it’s a necessity. It’s the result of taking risks and a path for feedback. Success is assured because we always get results. Our judgement of the result does not mean there was not an outcome, and any outcome means something worked, even if it was undesirable.
You are successful at everything you do. The strategies you try get a certain result. They are successful at getting that result, even if it’s not the result you want. You can successfully use the wrong strategy.
Strategies aren’t just business and marketing tactics, but the entire constellation of approaches, beliefs, actions, and feelings that result in a specific outcome.
When you started to learn to ride your bike, you probably crashed it or fell off many times. You could say you got really good at the “crashing bike strategy”. Maybe it was how you were thinking, or what you were focusing on, or what you were feeling or avoiding feeling, or the way you moved your body. One or some of those contributed to crashing. Through feedback and different approaches, you eventually figured out what worked, and found an appropriate strategy for the result you wanted; i.e. riding a bike.
The following is a quote from Edison referring to inventing the lightbulb:
“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” ‑Thomas A. Edison
One of the best reframes I’ve had was that “there’s no such thing as failure, only feedback.” It taught me that failing just meant learning if I paid attention, and that through conscious failures, I was actually getting closer to what I wanted. I was learning what didn’t work, and most importantly, that led me to make new choices.
It didn’t make the rejections, failures, and frustrations any more fun or take the suck away. What it did do was create the approach of growth and learning, so that no experience left me less or worse if it taught me something.
This is not just about semantics and trite reframes!
Understand that where you are in life—the current results you’re getting and how you feel—are all successful results based on how you once saw the world. These beliefs, energy configurations, traumas, worldviews, and perceptions operate out of your conscious awareness and drive your decisions. It is not the economy or fate, but this subconscious system that oft dictates what we’ll be successful at.
This all stems from millions of choices we’ve made, most in microseconds, completely forgotten. Who we decided we were or could be. What we thought we were worth. How people should treat us. What success looks like. What we should or shouldn’t do. How we’re unlovable. How much money we deserve. How creative we are.
Our genetics can be expressed in thousands of ways from one single genome. One person has thousands of potential physical outcomes from their DNA, all affected by their response to their environment and the choices they make. Your choices about who you think you are and how the world works, literally affects the expression of your genes and physical appearance.
And of course, it determines the results in life you get.
If you believe on some level you don’t deserve 100k/m in revenue, the path, products, and resources to get there won’t even show up on your radar or cross your mind. You will select the strategy which will successfully lead you to the income you feel you deserve. Or, perhaps you do end up making that much, but sabotage yourself with a successful take-out strategy to confirm your belief.
Remember, most of this happens completely unconscious for most people unless they cultivate incredible self awareness—like we’re doing here.
The beautiful thing is that we can make new choices. Not the right or wrong choices, but different choices that get different results.
Imagine two people in the same industry, one making 1k and the other 100k a month in revenue, working the same hours. One isn’t doing 100x less or more of the same thing—they are operating completely differently internally and externally.
There is nothing wrong with making $1000/m or $100,000/m. One is not inherently better or worse, right or wrong. However the strategies, the worldview, the beliefs, and actions are going to vary drastically between the two people. The way they think and feel will vary. The way they move through the world and solve problems will be different.
Suppose both of them were trying to make 1 million a month. In that case, they both “failed” at achieving that outcome. However, both are successful using the strategies for their given income level. They also got feedback that what they were doing didn’t work, and if they were paying attention—rather than judging, blaming, or avoiding—that data could move them closer to their desired result.
We all have strategies that work—that’s why we use them. On some level, they validate how feel we deserve to be treated, and so we think that’s just how life is. The question is, are they getting us the results we TRULY want in life and business?
Plot twist—this isn’t about failing or succeeding, it’s about feedback and new choices.
Once you understand that what you’re doing works (that’s why you’re doing it), you see that you’re an expert at the wrong strategy. Once you understand that failure is only feedback, you see that it’s not even a real event, just a judgement of the data.
This shift frees up all that energy we have tied up in the fear of failure or success. The fear of failing and the response to failing, are more crippling to an entrepreneur than failure itself! The fear of failure paralyzes us, and our response to failing traps us. The fear of success also paralyzes us, as we don’t take action because we don’t yet know how to handle more ease, love, support, intimacy, responsibility, and abundance.
Take risks and make mistakes, then learn from them. Fail forward smartly. Be willing to take up more space and be criticized for letting yourself have what others won’t. See the bigger picture of your growth, it’s not going to look how you think. Micro failure, macro success.