The Happiest Lives Podcast

E17: Failure

August 25, 2023 Jill M. Lillard Season 2023 Episode 17
The Happiest Lives Podcast
E17: Failure
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

What if the key to success lies in our failures? Buckle up for a riveting conversation where we dissect failure and how it shapes our identity. This episode is the last in our series on Being & Doing, and it's a game-changer!  When we stop perceiving failure as a setback, we experience it as a stepping stone to resilience, confidence, and determination. After listening to today's podcast, you'll realize that avoiding failure could actually be costing you more by disconnecting you from the very essence of your life. This thought-provoking discussion aims to reimagine and redefine failure as a catalyst for growth, opening doors to new experiences and opportunities.

This episode will fuel you with the courage to take risks, learn from your mistakes and create the life you've always envisioned. I'll share my insights on how our beliefs about failure mold our identity and how being receptive to failure can lead us to our true selves. I can't wait to hear your personal stories of failure and how you've transformed them into stepping stones. Here's a toast to embracing failure and perseverance despite the occasional stumble.

If you are ready to become the woman God says you already are, you have to join me in Clarity+Courage, my cost-effective coaching group for Christian women.

Learn more and enroll at www.myhappyvault.com/clarityandcourage

Questions? Email Jill directly at Jill@thehappiestlives.com

Speaker 1:

You are listening to the Happiest Lives podcast with Jill Lillard, episode number 17. Welcome to the Happiest Lives podcast, where you'll learn to think better, feel better and become the woman God says you already are. Here's your host, jill Lillard. Hey, hey, everybody, it's Jill and I am back for another exciting episode here on the Happiest Lives podcast. Thank you, guys, for joining me. It makes me so happy. You are listening And if you love what you've been hearing, i want to ask will you leave a review on your podcast player?

Speaker 1:

Of course you don't have to, but it does help this brand new podcast get noticed so more people can find us. And if you have left a review, know that I genuinely appreciate your contribution to the Happiest Lives podcast algorithm. Okay, so now on to the important stuff. Today we finish the series Being and Doing. As we talk about failure To fail, failing, failure.

Speaker 1:

Does this feel like a bad word to you? Don't worry, i'm not going to talk about bad words. Failure is actually a really good thing If you're experiencing it. It means you are living your life the way you're supposed to. What we believe about failing and how we respond to failure reflects in shapes who we are. Who we are is our sense of identity and being. When we embrace failure, we develop resilience, authenticity and a growth mindset that helps us persevere and take new actions again and again. Remember we are daughters of the king, and so we don't have to prove ourselves or earn our worth. We have that already. In fact, we have all we need. We already are.

Speaker 1:

You don't have to fear failing, because who you are is not at stake. When you imagine failing, how do you feel? Does it make you feel terrible? Do you try to avoid failure at all costs? If we ask the word hippo what failure means, it, is this A state or condition of not meeting a desirable or intended objective? That's it. That's what it means to fail. Things don't go as you wanted or expected. Is that really so scary? What are you making it mean when you do not meet your desired results? It doesn't mean you're a bad person, you aren't somehow defective or less than. It doesn't mean anything about you, except what you are making it mean. When you make it mean certain things about your identity, value or worth, you will feel disappointment, frustration, shame, fear. If you worry, others will judge you as incompetent, you will feel anxious and avoid failing at all costs.

Speaker 1:

Sometimes failure does cost us money, wasted time and effort or missed opportunities, but that is part of winning. We lose some time. However, when we are fixated on the belief that we wasted or lost something because we tried, we may feel significant stress, and that thought is optional. You don't have to think that. I like to think that I am never wasting my time because I refuse to waste it. I learn and grow from each failure. That is a gift, that is a gain.

Speaker 1:

Another reason failure can feel terrible is if we are comparing our outcome with someone else's, we may feel inadequate as we judge ourselves. This leads to lowering our expectations and playing it safe. It feels so good when you set a goal for yourself and you achieve it, or when everything goes as you wanted it to go. Yet it is unrealistic to believe that life works this way. When I don't do as I expected or the outcome isn't what I desired, i like to take it as a reminder that I am a fallible human who needs the grace of God. When I fall short and miss the mark I set for myself, i'm humbled and I have learned to be more okay with that.

Speaker 1:

Most of us are so afraid to fail because we think if we do, we will feel terrible, and we don't want to feel terrible. So there are two solutions to this. Option one is to play it safe and avoid failing avoid feeling. Or option two be willing to fail and feel. Let's look at option one Play it safe to avoid the pain of failing. Avoid feeling. Avoid feeling terrible. Safety and comfort sound amazing. Who doesn't want that? I love to be safe and comfortable, and yet I have learned to embrace discomfort and, honestly, i love that too, because I know it is the currency for success. And there is a price. When I'm unwilling to be uncomfortable, let's look at the cost of this alternative.

Speaker 1:

Staying in the comfort zone and prizing comfort and safety over all else, we miss out on opportunities for growth. Here is why, when we are willing to fail, we open ourselves up to actually failing, and when we fail, the growth process is to analyze what went wrong, identify your mistakes or weaknesses and learn from them. When we learn from what didn't go well, we create new strategies and skill sets, we build resilience and the ability to bounce back from setbacks, we learn how to adapt to challenges, overcoming obstacles, and we keep moving forward despite our failures. We overcome failure When you are unwilling to fail, however, you never overcome it. It rules you. You are waiting until you think you will get it perfect and in doing so, you miss out on strengthening your determination, building your confidence and growing your ability to persevere.

Speaker 1:

You disconnect from your life. You also miss out on new information you would have by failing. You don't try the things and learn what works and doesn't work. So you think you are avoiding pain by playing it safe, but you actually cause more discomfort and pain in the long game because you have not built up those muscles. It's like the comfort of the couch and the snacks and the TV. If you think that this is your best life and that exercise is no fun and terrible, then you will choose the couch, overtaking a walk or lifting weights, which feels good in the moment. But when you have lived that way for years or you've sat on the couch for hours, you pay a hefty price tag of comfort and safety as your body grows weaker, loses resilience and flexibility.

Speaker 1:

This brings us to alternative number two Be willing to fail and feel. Be willing to feel terrible. When you are willing to fail and feel uncomfortable, you change the game. You want to find a new way to think about your failure so you don't feel so terrible. But you also want to be willing to feel terrible. Just don't make it feel worse than it has to feel. Let's use the exercise analogy. If, mentally, you are focused on how bad it feels to work out and how great the couch is, you will avoid working out. But if you shift your focus to think about exercise differently, you will be more likely to work out.

Speaker 1:

The truth is, sore muscles don't feel good. However, when I lift weights to the point of failure, to the point where I can't lift anymore, i set my muscles up to break down, which means they will build back up and I will be stronger. This process of failing is actually my friend. So when I feel sore after working out, i remind myself I am becoming stronger, rather than agonizing over how terrible I feel. I become willing to feel terrible because I know that means I'm becoming better. It is the cost of being made strong, which has a huge payoff. Unlike sitting on the couch for hours, failure often pushes us to be creative as we look for new solutions and perspectives. Some of the most groundbreaking inventions and discoveries have risen from failure and setbacks.

Speaker 1:

When you play it safe by avoiding failure. You fail in advance. You miss out on what could have been. You never give yourself the opportunity to reach the goal And even if you try to reach the goal and you miss it, you miss the mark. Think about who you become in the process of trying. That is the gift. If you don't try, you miss out on all of that.

Speaker 1:

As I said earlier, failure reminds me that I am a fallible human being. That is so humbling. It puts you in your position. But I welcome the humbling as it binds my heart to the Lord's And it promotes empathy, understanding and compassion for others who face similar challenges. It helps me connect with the greater whole, the body of all the believers, so that I can build up the members. I can encourage others who need encouragement. I'm grateful that things don't always go my way, as this is when I broaden my perspective on life and priorities and learn to focus on what matters the most.

Speaker 1:

If you want to appreciate success, you must fail. Success is not meaningful or rewarding when we have not tasted failure. There is a sweet appreciation of your own efforts and dedication when you have persevered through trials and failures. Because I have failed so many times, i savor and experience a deep sense of gratitude for all of my wins And I can look back and appreciate missing the mark, because in that humbling process, i lose my pride, replacing it with gratitude and compassion which are so life-giving and feel so amazing. My wish for you is that you are willing to look your fears in the eyeballs, facing them head-on.

Speaker 1:

When we stop letting failure define us, we are willing to take calculated risks. When we embrace failure, we step outside of our comfort zone and start really living our lives. As we pursue new opportunities and aim for bigger aspirations, we connect to our hearts and we connect to the heart of the Lord, which positions us to connect better with other people. We move from simply existing to experience fleeting pleasures, to really living our lives for what matters and satisfies most of all. What would you do if you could not fail? If you have a clear answer for that, then the only thing standing in the way of you trying is your fear of failing. The alternative to failure is to keep recycling the same life. Avoid risks, expect little, so you won't be disappointed. Disconnect. However, if you're willing to fail and willing to feel, you open yourself up to so many more opportunities Any time you try something new or step outside your comfort zone, there is a risk of failure, but don't sabotage yourself preemptively by failing to act.

Speaker 1:

You don't have to know how to do the new thing You won't know until you actually do it And to find out how, you're going to have to fail many times. The more you fail, the more you will learn, if you do it consciously. Sometimes we will say that we are confused, that we're not sure what to do. We don't know how to do it, but we don't have to know how You figure it out as you go along by trying the thing. So stop saying you're confused about it and just make a decision and move forward. Fear, confusion and overwhelm they can be ways that we buffer. They can be the perfect excuse not to try, which is just another way to avoid failing.

Speaker 1:

I hope all of this resonates with you today and that you have found a new way to think about failure. I would love to hear what you have cried because of listening to this podcast and how it did not work out. I want to hear about the failure, what risk you took and maybe how it didn't go as you hoped it would, because the more you're willing to fail and learn, the more you will become the woman who you already are. I am here. I am cheering you on. Thank you, guys, so much for showing up today and listening. We will talk again soon. Bye.

Embracing Failure and Growth
Embracing Failure and Growth