How to create change: Part 4 – Using failure to grow

If we are able to conceive of a failure as an opportunity for growth, we are all the more likely to experience that growth. If we think of a fall as the worst thing in the world, it becomes just that.

We can grow when we experience trauma. This is post-traumatic growth. For this to happen one has to interpret the event positively, accept the event, be optimistic and tackle the problem head-on.

Failure is inevitable. It will happen. But the way we live through failure will decide our success ultimately.

If we give up when failure happens then failure is final. If we do not give up then we have the best chance of success.

To do that we have to:

Choose a positive counterfact when anything negative happens: create an alternate positive scenario to what has happened so that we do not give up and continue to forge ahead.

Choose an optimistic explanatory style: a positive way of interpreting adversity as local and temporary and not global and permanent

Practice the ABCD model of interpretation: 

  • A=Adversity-event-cannot change
  • B=Belief- our reaction to the event- can change it to positive belief
  • C=Consequence- depends on the belief-positive/negative
  • D=Disputation-challenging our unhelpful beliefs, Decatastrophizing-taking time to show ourselves that it is not as bad as it seems

Once we do these we do not fall down, we fall up.


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