Past failures don’t determine future failures

Aren’t we glad that past failures don’t mean future failures? That thing you tried to do, and it failed, doesn’t mean that the next thing you try will also fail. It is very difficult to extract yourself from the memories of past failures but if you let them, they will either define your future or be just the educational thing you need to succeed the next time.

Years ago, I was in a very successful person’s office for a meeting and on the way to his office there was a long hallway covered with pictures of companies the person had either started or invested in. When I ask about all the pictures, I was told that it was the wall of shame. I said, “wall of fame or wall of shame?” the person laughed and said it was all the failed investments he had made. There must have been 50 pictures of companies on that wall. He told me that he keeps them there to remind himself that just because you might be good at one thing, doesn’t mean you will be good everything.

He went to tell me that past failures can be very helpful to future opportunities because you have a PhD on what not to do again. I thought that was so insightful because he viewed his past failures as the education he needed for future opportunities.

It’s easy to look at a past failure and allow it to consume you to the point that it hinders you from ever trying again. If you allow that mentality, you could very well miss the future opportunities that God puts in front of you. If you have past failures, remember them but don’t let them control your life. Instead put them in your life’s educational file which will allow you to remember them for what they taught you instead of defining your future. KT

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