Life @ U of T

Moving Past Failure

Some people like to say that failure is the most important step to reaching success, but to me it can sometimes feel a bit “soul crushing.” During my first year at U of T I have come to realize that in order to overcome failure I needed to learn how to not be scared of it. The strategy that works for me is realizing and believing that failure can be overcome.

The dictionary defines failure as the lack of success, but I think that the true definition behind it is up to the person. What I consider failure can be considered small things in someone else’s mind. Normally, I see that I have failed when I let other’s down or just myself. I consider I have failed to reach my goals and expectation for this first year at university. As a student trying really hard in a class and still not doing as well as I should be doing is considered failure to me. Trying my hardest to do something that is of important to me and failing is when it really tampers with my confidence.

When it comes to failure at University it is really easy to get demotivated. It is important to not give up, since when it comes to classes there is always more that can be done to improve the grade or to simply understand better.

My first year of University has taught me one simple thing, how to use failure as a learning experience. Throughout my learning experience I realized a few things:

  1. Know when to move on: by this phrase I mean to let something go before too much is invested such as time, energy, and other valuable resources. What I like to focus on is how you can push yourself and others to stay focus on your goals but to create new ways of reaching this goal by changing the organization or the efforts.
  2. Make failure = a learned lesson: failed a test? Forgot to turn in an assignment worth 5% of your grade? Learn from it, what can I do better? How can I organize myself so this does not happen again. It is the moment to realize what exactly is not working in the plan.

At first, I would let failure define me. By not letting failure become my identity I understand that it is something that just happens, and not something that I am. When I got a low mark on a test for the first time, it made me feel like someone who only makes mistakes. By acknowledging failure I realized I needed more help at understanding certain topics.


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