Nov 20, 2011
After you've done your best
...then what do you do?
Slamming your six iron into the ground, yelling at yourself, cursing out your staff, second-guessing, berating bystanders—there are plenty of ways we demonstrate our frustration that our best didn't work this time.
But is it helpful?
Learning from a failure is critical. Connecting effort with failure at an emotional level is crippling. After all, we've already agreed you did your best.
Early in our careers, we're encouraged to avoid failure, and one way we do that is by building up a set of emotions around failure, emotions we try to avoid, and emotions that we associate with the effort of people who fail. It turns out that this is precisely the opposite of the approach of people who end up succeeding.
If you believe that righteous effort leads to the shame of personal failure, you'll seek to avoid righteous effort.
Successful people analytically figure out what didn't work and redefine what their best work will be in the future. And then they get back to work.
Let the guys at ESPN do the racket throwing.