The Good Side of Failure: A Learning Opportunity

Failure means you didn't do well at something you tried. This sounds bad, but it really isn't. It doesn't mean that you can't do it. It just means you can't do it in one shot. You need to try again. That's all. When you fail, look at what went wrong. Then, try again using a different method. Below is an example of someone trying to do something. For this scenario, explain how the person failed. Then, identify what they might have done wrong. What did they learn from each failure?

Susan was baking a cake. She was following the directions in a recipe. She needed 3 eggs, but only had 2. Her cake turned out too dry and didn't rise.

1. What was Susan's failure?
2. What did Susan do wrong?
3. What did Susan learn from her mistake? What should she do next time?

Everyone makes mistakes or fails at something from time to time. But when you fail you also learn something new. Every time you fail you can take a look at what you did wrong. This will help you become better for the next time you try.

To do things right, does not just mean to praise our success. It also means to learn from our failures. To fix what went wrong and do it again. Even if the second or third try does not work. Failing can be where you find strength and drive to push forward. You will fail many times. How you use and learn from these failures will show you what you're able to do. Here are 5 tips on how to fail with grace.

1. Take it all in.
When a failure happens accept it. How you react to what has happened, big or small, can make a difference to how you will carry on. Laugh it off, or take a break.

2. Ask why.
Reflect on why things went wrong. Find out where the change happened.

3. Make the change.
Accept that you have failed and why you failed. It is time to figure out what change has to be made. Then choose how to make sure it does not happen again. Failing is not bad, but failing the same way is.

4. Find the silver lining.
Within every failure, there is a lesson. The kind of lesson that later on will keep you from failing the same way again. Failures can help us learn more about ourselves. What strengths and weaknesses we have. So no matter how big or small the failure is, there is always a beautiful lesson to be learned.

5. Allow Grace.
Accept your faults and embrace them as things that make you who you are. No one is perfect, but sometimes we need to be reminded. So offer yourself some grace and time to reflect.

Don't be scared to fail. Making mistakes can be a lot of fun. Check out this free worksheet from our Learning Skills for Global Competency ready-made resource to learn how to have fun making mistakes.

FailureFreeGuideLearningLife skillsMistakesScenarioSocial studiesStepsTipsWorksheet