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3 ways to deal with failure at work

3 ways to deal with failure at work

Ever had a fail at work?

You're not alone. 

Not getting the promotion, missing a big deadline, heading up a project that got canned, being pipped at the post by your competition, or having your small business go under - big or small, most people have their own story of a failure at work.

If this has happened to you recently - take heart.

There is an upside to failure.

Studies have shown that failure can actually make it more likely that you will succeed.

Research from INSEAD, published in the journal Psychological Science, shows that nearly succeeding at something can further motivate you to achieve other goals, which is why how you respond to failure at work can make or break your career.

3 ways to pick yourself up and move on to better things

  1. Separate yourself from your failure. Failing to achieve an objective or goal is not a reflection on you as a person, but on what needed to be done differently. The more objectively you look at the situation, the quicker you'll be able to make a second attempt.
  2. Avoid the blame game. While it’s tempting to fall into self-pity and reasons why it should have been you that got the promotion/opportunity/project, it does nothing to further your own agenda. Look first at how you can improve – after all, success is the best revenge.
  3. Be realistic. As the writer C.S Lewis said, “Failures are finger posts on the road to success". No one who ever achieved anything worthwhile did so without stumbling a few times first. Accept that setbacks are part of everyone’s journey, then move forward.

Finally, there are some failures you can protect yourself from. Get involuntary redundancy cover as an optional extra to your income cover to protect you if you’re made redundant from a full-time job, or you’re self-employed and your business becomes insolvent. 

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