Take Off The Failure Badge

“I am a failure.”

These were the opening words of what became a real outpouring of emotion. Their conversation was fast, words tripping over each other. I looked quizzically, not sure I understood the statement.

“I’m almost 50, single and not in a job I love. I look around me and I’m the only one in this position.”

And breathe.

“So does your life look like this every day?” I asked.

“Oh no,” came the response. “But I expected to have all these things sorted by now.”


This last question caused a halt in her thinking, almost like she couldn’t believe I would ask such a stupid question. And yet…

I am sure the above statement could apply to any of us on a bad day. Life, work, relationships all have their ups and downs. But the truth is none of those areas of life are in our full control. We may kid ourselves, but…

Of course, we think all the time about our life events which makes us experience the emotion of them, good or bad. And given that we can’t control our thoughts, ups and downs are inevitable.

However, the real BUT comes when we add an EXPECTATION into the scenario that we cannot control.

This simple act has the power to have us turn an everyday situation into a real failure for us – one that we experience deeply.

And yet, only we can decide if we have failed or not – and to come to that conclusion we need a scale to measure against. To measure my worth against this me-created scale and of course failing because we set the bar so high – well that is plain crazy.

Now the truth is that life happens. It just does, whether or not we set targets.

Wouldn’t it be better to give ourselves a break? To look for and notice the fun at work? We may need to look in a slightly different direction, remove the ‘I am unhappy in my job’ filter, or even find a new job if that is the best answer!

Come what may, when we wear the failure badge, making the best decision becomes nigh on impossible.

Be kind to yourself. If you have to set yourself targets, set them so you can smash them and become a real success in your eyes and everyone else’s!

If you would like to learn more about this understanding and how it can transform your business or team, just as it has for countless other businesses, please  contact me at sue.farmer@miradorus.com