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Everything Counts: 52 Remarkable Ways to Inspire Excellence and Drive Results by Gary Ryan Blair

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Chapter 44. Failure Counts

"You are rewarded with success based on your ability to understand and learn from failure."

The dreaded "F" word—failure—is so important, yet so misunderstood. Failure serves an indispensable function in the production of your success. It provides information and motivation for you to learn from and apply. It is a sign that points toward progress; however, depending on your perception, it either moves you closer to or further from your goals.

Few people choose to study their own failures, except to lament the consequences that bring them about and to formulate what they believe to be corrective solutions. While most tend to concentrate on the negative side of failure and ignore its positive contributions, the bright side of failure must be acknowledged for what it is and why it exists. Only then can failures and proposed remedies be properly understood and appreciated.

People are generally naive about failure's benefits. Incorrectly formulated assumptions about failure replace potentially accurate assessments of what is necessary to achieve success. Failure—which spends much of its life in the gulag of public perception—is, by all measures, essential to success. In fact, success depends on a constant stream of small and occasionally large failures, and unfortunately, failure usually gets a bum rap. But failure is not merely the output of an unsuccessful activity, it is also the input for a successful one. However, unless failure is understood and respected ...

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