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When you are passionate about something, you try your best to avoid mistakes. You put your heart on the line and take everything too seriously. And every failure or setback seems like the end of the world.
Yet, no matter how careful and perfect you try to become, there will always be something that goes wrong.
Most people act as if they could never make mistakes. They see failures as the ending of their careers and dreams. So, the first time they crumble, they get burned.
You may survive a failure or two if you have a fixed mindset. But, eventually, you will give up. And you will likely never turn back to your passions because they disappointed you once.
But what if we try to shift this paradigm? What if we start to use the mistakes we made?
If we shift our mindset from fixed to growth, we could achieve two results:
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Awareness is the first step towards improvement.
Yes, I know – it’s obvious. But, sometimes, the most obvious thing is the hardest to cope with.
So, to avoid deep falls, you better be aware that anything could go wrong. Sometimes, even terribly so. And you have to be ready. Find a way to predict what could go sideways. Or, at least, prepare for the worst.
Down the road, you will know if it was worth the investment. If nothing happens, good for you. But if it does, it won’t destroy your morale that much. So, this is the reason why you should write a how-to-fail list.
Okay, good. Everybody should write at least one how-to-fail list. I will assume I convinced you. But what is that?
That’s pretty simple.
A How-to-Fail list is an exact description of the events that could make you fail a project that means a lot to you.
But not only that. It must contain the precise steps that would bring you to failure and the mistakes that would worsen the situation.
In the beginning, as you have never experienced any failure, your list will be raw and incomplete. But don’t worry! You have time to improve it the first time you face a setback. And, as you get to know your flaws better, you could enrich each step with a cause, probability, and even remedy.
Your how-to-fail list will become a warning for your flaws and the solution to escape them. So, let’s see how to build one to avoid and learn from your mistakes.
A How-to-Fail list is a sequence of steps that describe the many ways your project could fail. And you can build it following four simple steps.
First of all, you must imagine which are the progressive steps that would bring you from the simplest mistake to the biggest disaster.
If you already know your flaws, it will be easy to find a starting point. But if you don’t, start with the basics: lack of motivation, procrastination, poor goal setting, etc.
Each step could split into multiple consequences. However, it would be better to reduce complexity and focus on one mistake at a time.
The first steps of your lists will always have a high probability because they are your most common flaws. But you should also be aware that worse things could happen.
I won’t bother to make a How-to-Fail list for events that have a 1% probability of happening. But if you want to, I won’t stop you.
And then, you must find a remedy for each step that could help you climb back to the initial state when everything worked fine.
Search for a remedy will be almost impossible if you have never made a mistake. So I suggest you read other people’s stories to find possible solutions. And then, if it will ever happen, you may find your answers.
Here’s a short list of benefits in case you are not convinced yet.
Pick one of the projects you care about the most and build a few how-to-fail lists for it. Start with a specific flow you have. And then try to make it worse and worse. Write the probability for each step, its cause, and a possible remedy.
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Passionate about self-improvement, personal growth, finance, and creativity. I love to inspire people to become the better version of themselves. Author @ www.cosmopolitanmindset.com
When you are passionate about something, you try your best to avoid mistakes. So why don't you try to avoid them?
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