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Why We Should Accept Our Fails Faster

The first alarm bell started ringing when I read a check-in form and learned my client was devastated about her promotion.

Yes…devastated, about her promotion! I could honestly feel her despair across the ether.

When we were together she presented a muddy mix of anger, fear, sadness and shame. Plus an urgent need to fix that.

You see, by this time Ruby (not her real name) had performed badly in an important meeting the day after her ‘devastating promotion’. And now she felt certain the same thing was happening again – and acting as if someone else would be chosen to lead the project she felt her future depended on.

She was living with overwhelming desperation, now struggling to keep up with deliverables and feeling stuck in a cycle of doom.

I listened hard. And asked sticky questions. Eventually Ruby engaged with her feelings as they arose. But nothing shifted until she finally accepted her feelings and understood they existed because she’d attached something far, far bigger to narrowly defined outcomes.

Her entire future happiness relied on a fragile thread of faith – that she didn’t have control of – and meant she was ‘failing’ over and over again!

Work hard and hope is not a strategy for success.

Confidence is over-rated. And faith is sometimes blind.

While dwelling on our flaws and mistakes can dent our confidence if taken to extremes (it’s one marker of clinical depression), on the other hand, skimming over unflattering information eventually translates to misleading ourselves.

Stay tuned tomorrow to find out how Ruby (and you) move past deep disappointments.

Helen Hanison

Helen Hanison is the only executive coach bringing a unique blend of marketing savvy and commercial edges to coaching that draws on her background in psychology. She helps seasoned professionals who are stuck at a career crossroads to make a plan aligning work they love with a life they want to lead.

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