Bookmark Website  | Free Registration  | The Team
The Lounge  | Champions  | The Wire |  Schedule |  Audio  |  Arcade  |  The Top Ten  |  Historical  |  Email  |  Video

Dont Let Failure Go To Your Head


I watched as an 8-year-old All-Star slid dramatically into second base. Yet the umpire gave the dreaded signal, "Out!" The crowd yelled, "That's OK. Way to hustle! Great try!"

Another little fellow swings the bat with all the power he can muster?three times without hitting the ball. Each time, the fans encouraged, "Good swing! Now just pick out a good one and make contact! Watch it over. You can do it!" Then the strike-out. "That's OK, man. Next time."

I eavesdroppped as one of the coaches talked to my grandson Joseph's team, who had just lost their second in the double elimination tournament. "We have nothing to be ashamed of. You guys played hard and you played well. The other team just played a little better this time. You're gonna keep practicing and next year, you'll come back and you'll be great!"

I was impressed as Steven, another coach, modeled for his young protgs the responsibility he was trying to teach. In front of the whole team, he apologized to Adam for his own mistake in signaling the boy to run on to third base in a play that resulted in an out. He didn't want the young man to blame himself for something that wasn't his fault.

Maybe you're thinking, "Of course, we tell them those things. We don't want them to get discouraged. We want them to keep trying and not give up."

Exactly.

We instinctively know what we need to do the keep these little guys motivated and encouraged.

(Most of us, that is. Unfortunately, in the last few years of attending these games, I have heard occasionally heard some children being subjected to loud, harsh criticism from insensitive parents. I admit I was savoring the idea of punching them out when I was deterred by picturing the next day's headlines in the Hattiesburg American!)

HOW DO YOU TALK TO YOURSELF?

You know how to encourage others. But do you do as well with yourself? Do you know how to keep yourself encouraged in the face of failure and setbacks? Take this short quiz.

1. When you make a mistake, do you ever talk to yourself harshly and judgmentally, like this? "You idiot! Can't you do anything right? You should have known better."

Think about it. What if you had a spouse or a boss that talked to you this way? How would this affect your performance? Your morale? Your confidence?

Why not use more encouraging words to yourself, like the fans to the Little Leaguers? Talk to yourself about the effort you made, the little ways that your most recent try showed improvement over the last, and the things you learned from the failed attempt.

2. Do you ever generalize from a specific performance failure to seeing yourself as a general failure?

In other words, you didn't fail that test. You're a failure as a student. You didn't lose that contract. You're a dud as a salesperson.

Change that! Talk to yourself about the specific situation. Don't overgeneralize.

3. When you don't accomplish what you had hoped, do you tell yourself, "This is always the way it is for me?"

In other words, do you view the failure as a never-ending pattern?

Challenge that hope-robbing perspective. If you are to keep hope and keep trying, you must see your failures as temporary. Get to work and find out how you can do better next time.

4. Do you make yourself responsible for things over which you have no control?

Recognize your human limits. Others make their own choices about what they do, despite your best efforts. There are very real conditions that impact your success at a task, no matter how skillfully and diligently you try. Take responsibility for doing your best, but be realistic about what you can control and what you can't.

BE YOUR BEST FRIEND

If you have trouble changing the habit of talking negatively to yourself, here's another tool you can use. Imagine that your best friend were telling you about the situation you're in, and that the words being used were self-berating?like yours. What would you say to him or her? How would you encourage him or her to find the best in the situation and keep trying?

See?you do know how to do it. Now, do that for yourself.If you aren't your own best friend, who will be?

Dr. Bev Smallwood is a psychologist who has worked with organizations across the globe for over 20 years. Her high-energy, high-content, high-involvement Magnetic Workplaces (r) programs provide dozens of practical strategies and skills that can be put to work immediately to:

  • build strong leaders who influence and develop others through serving

  • energize, motivate, and retain team members

  • successfully accomplish important organizational transitions

  • impress customers and build their loyalty

  • Review a complete list of her programs available for your convention or corporate meeting at the website, www.MagneticWorkplaces.com


    MORE RESOURCES:

    Lions use title loss as motivation
    The Tennessean
    Memories of CPA's loss to Alcoa in the 3A finals last year is motivating the team this season. Loading… Post to Facebook. Lions use title loss as motivation Memories of CPA's loss to Alcoa in the 3A finals last year is motivating the team this season ...

    and more »


    International Business Times UK

    Romelu Lukaku's 'mentality and motivation' questioned by Mourinho
    The Guardian
    “Romelu was always clear that in his mentality and his approach he was not highly motivated to come to a competitive situation at Chelsea,” Mourinho said in the Daily Mirror. “He wanted to play for Chelsea, but clearly only as first-choice striker ...
    Jose Mourinho: Lukaku Lacked Motivation to Play for ChelseaInternational Business Times UK
    Lack of motivation for Chelsea led to Jose Mourinho selling Romelu Lukaku to ...Western Daily Press
    Jose: Lukaku lacked motivationSportinglife.com

    all 787 news articles »


    Motivation for GOP House lawsuit clear
    mySanAntonio.com
    SAN ANTONIO — A recent poll by CNN/ORC International shows majority opposition both to suing the president for alleged abuse of his executive powers or impeaching him on the same grounds. But, even if majorities backed a lawsuit or impeachment, ...



    Motivating students
    Deccan Herald
    But, they become less interested and motivated in the school environment that at times even successful students get low grades or fails. This throws the parents and teachers into panics. How can we best foster students' academic motivation? What are ...



    The Secret of Effective Motivation
    New York Times
    You might suppose that a scientist motivated by a desire to discover facts and by a desire to achieve renown will do better work than a scientist motivated by just one of those desires. Surely two motives are better than one. But as we and our ...



    New research shows lack of motivation affects cognitive performance in ...
    Science Codex
    "Loss of motivation is a core feature of schizophrenia that we need to investigate with increased focus," said Dr. Gary Remington, senior scientist with the CAMH Campbell Family Mental Health Research Institute who served as the senior investigator on ...

    and more »


    Rays Notes: Wins extra motivation to keep price
    Tbo.com
    ST. PETERSBURG — Entering Tuesday's game against the Milwaukee Brewers, the Tampa Bay Rays had won 10 of their last 11 games and are 19-5 since June 28. Maybe a coincidence, but if winning to keep David Price around was a goal, it was the extra ...

    and more »


    Fast Company

    How To Re&Discover Your Motivation
    Fast Company
    Real motivation doesn't come from external rewards--it comes from making some shifts in how you think about your situation, says San Diego, California-based personal empowerment expert Susan Fowler, author of Why Motivating People Doesn't Work .



    Philly.com

    Penn State's Belton finds motivation in doubters
    Philly.com
    CHICAGO - Reading Bill Belton's tweets over the last week or two, you would think Penn State's running back from South Jersey felt he was being disrespected. Check out two from July 21. He wrote in one, "Underrated and overlooked . . . damn I'm excited ...

    and more »


    Science AAAS

    One type of motivation may be key to success
    Science AAAS
    There are two types of motivation. Internal motivation drives people to achieve a goal for its own sake, whereas external motivation is not directly related to the goal itself. For example, if you are learning how to play the violin, you may be ...
    Looking for a Promotion? Pure Motivations Produce the Best ResultsPacific Standard

    all 6 news articles »

    Google News


    Advertisement



    Section Site Map - Submit News - Feedback - Comments - Advertise with Us

    Copyright 2006 Luminati Inc. All rights reserved.