Your Failures… Are they a Question of Misleading Interpretations?

Your Failures… Are they a Question of Misleading Interpretations?

We often go through some days where everything that could have gone wrong, actually goes wrong. The surprising sequence of events on such days gives us the feeling of a coordinated domino effect or even a butterfly effect reflecting some kind of order in the chaos of failure. Therefore, we rush to qualify or justify the hazardous situation by blaming the bad luck, or even emotionally thinking about supernatural or evil forces!

That said, Do not be fooled by appearances and deceptive thoughts! What we fail to perceive is that failure is often a matter of misleading interpretation of the truth. Beyond the conventional reaction about how important to draw post-disappointment learning lessons, I would also emphasize that we all need to stop seeking any emotional justification of failure that will make the situation even more stigmatized. This is only going to reinforce the spiral of disappointment.

Our understanding of any failure and the disappointment behind it is often determined by an ambiguous contract and irrational expectation requirements we have between us and ourselves. There are often situations where a failure, we stigmatized, turns out a few hours, weeks, or months later a real trap of false good idea that we have done well to avoid. There are also some cases where we put ourselves in stress and pressure to deliver an over-qualified product to a client while the latter do not value many features that required us time, money and effort. There are also other cases where we are poorly or misleadingly briefed about a client requirement due to internal political conflicts that we are not aware of. We end up failing to deliver a product which is matching the expectations not because our incompetence or lack of motivation but due to hidden stakeholders agendas. In the last three examples, disappointments and failures are ephemeral overestimated, and especially outside your control and influence.

A failure is not a loss of opportunity; it is rather a path to re-start more intelligently. The constructive or reconstructive (after destruction) approach should be accompanied by an effective, efficient, and relevant social mirror(s). The latter consists of the views and opinions of trusted advisors which are not necessarily biased persons that are often docile to your own decisions (family, close friends,…). Social Mirrors should be based on people who do not always agree with you and challenge you with arguments that you feel bothering or disturbing at a first glance, but you then oversee, later, that they are relevant. This type of mirror should stabilize the quality of your judgments and feelings about failures. We need to love this mirror, not narcissistically, but as a necessity for survival and fulfilment.

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