I am a “recoverer” and I am an unyielding, willful believer of learning from life’s challenges. As a woman of heart and a coach who has a value for intellectual and emotional rigor I pay a lot of attention to the process of learning from life’s challenges.
Some of you know me how I used to be -and at times, I still am- very critical of myself after a failure. I used to spend weeks harboring negativity in my heart about lost opportunities, a bad interview or a difficult relationship. Failure still makes me antsy at times but there is something strange happening to me nowadays. After years of asking my clients the question: What is the learning in this for you? I finally got around really looking deeply for myself!
The learning we experience when we fail is never about the failure itself! It is not about analyzing our strengths or weaknesses. It is not even about what I need to do differently next time.
Learning is about what part of my being is called forth to grow and develop from the experience I went through as surely the experience is part of the journey I am taking. This perspective landed on my gently and gave me a fresh perspective. I missed this previously because I was too busy judging my performance, holding back or attached to a particular outcome- normally the outcome I wanted oh-so -desperately. I was too entrenched in my “doing” and I pushed aside my “being”!
I am learning that only when I grow my being I can experience real growth in my life! Growing my “doing” is easy- getting another job, a degree, a promotion. It is all great and part of our expansion and we should not disregard our ambitions as a way to expand in our capacity.
However, growing my “being” is to be more open, approachable, courageous, honest, humble and in service of others is the less tangible and more powerful growth. Becoming a better human being every day is a courageous choice and from that choice we become a little more every day.
“A single day is enough to make us a little larger or, another time, a little smaller.”
― Paul Klee