- Do you feel like a failure?
- Do you feel like, no matter how hard you try, you never succeed?
- Do your dreams seem to elude you?
- Does it feel like you're the only one unlucky in love?
I don't believe in failure. Not when there's honest intention and effort behind your perceived failure. At the very least you tried, dared, took a risk, or allowed yourself to be vulnerable. You created a plan, made choices, and took action. But when intention and effort don't generate the success you imagined, the emotional consequences sometimes feel unbearable. You feel defeated. You experience loss, anger, sadness, self-doubt, frustration, and fear. And sometimes you're tempted to give up. But I say: never, ever give up. Instead, find the fortune in failure because there's nothing more empowering than experiencing your own resilience and tenacity. In fact, I think the real success lies in continued belief in yourself, your worth, and your dreams even when external forces try to convince you you're worthless.
My biggest sense of failure was my divorce. I distinctly remember the immobilizing emotional pain even though it was seven years ago. I felt trapped in a vacuum of defeat to the extent that the idea of ever living fully and loving again seemed like the impossible dream. I went through the motions of life, functioning on auto-pilot until I realized that survival wasn't enough for me. Shriveling into a lesser version of myself and never experiencing my true potential in life or love simply wasn't an option. Because deep down inside I still wanted a kick-ass life! I wanted that old Keex back; the dreamer, the doer, the creator, the communicator, the lover of life. I had to somehow dig deep and start believing in possibility again; that my "happily ever after" didn't have to become "miserable ever after".
While divorce certainly made me feel like failure for years, the healing process taught me that I had to:
- let myself grieve the loss of my relationship and feel the pain of betrayal, sadness, anger and hurt. But not wallow in it forever.
- self-reflect and re-evaluate how I contributed to the end of our relationship. What relationship patterns, choices and behaviors was I perpetuating in my marriage that helped weaken our bond?
- make new choices and behave in a way that aligns with what I really want.
So now I pay attention to the red flags, honor my boundaries, speak my truth, and communicate my needs better than I ever have before. I'm not distracted by my need to feel loved, desired or wanted. I love myself and know my worth. I know what I want, need and deserve in a relationship and the personal strength to wait for it without compromise. And thanks to the "failure" of my marriage, I now know how to address all defeat with this type of objectivity and clarity. "Failure" is an opportunity for growth.
Indie Girl Diary: writing prompt
Failure at __________ is teaching me:
Indie Girl-Talk: let's chat!
What has "failure" taught you about yourself?