There’s an old saying that revered Rugby League coach Wayne Bennett recently repeated regarding the evolution of his sport and it goes something like this: “If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep getting what you’ve always got”.
He was referring to the pursuit of success and illustrating how failure meant the need for change.
It seems that some people are born to achieve anything they want. Some would say they are lucky, are blessed or have the Midas touch. But what truly is the reason for their success? Family background, wealth, greater opportunities, high morals, an easy childhood?
“The difference between average people and achieving people is their perception of, and response to, failure,” says renowned leadership coach, John Maxwell.
The not-talked-about, terrible truth is that all roads to achievement lead through the land of failure. Many have experience failure and learned to how to turn it into a path for success.
Leadership expert, Peter Drucker says, “The better a man is, the more mistakes he will make, for the more new things he will try.”
Some unsuccessful people tell themselves that as soon as they achieve considerable success or discover some unseen talent, they will turn their attention to making a difference in the lives of others. However, many people who struggle with chronic failure do so because they think of no-one but themselves. They worry about what other people think of them. They scramble to make sure no one gets the better of them. They continually focus on protecting their turf. If you continually focus all your energy and attention on yourself, you need to ‘get over yourself, because everyone else has’.
If you have a history of repeated failure and you dedicate most of your time and energy to looking out for ‘number one’, you may need to learn a new way of thinking – where others come first.
This article is based on an extract from John C. Maxwell’s book, Failing Forward (2000 Thomas Nelson)