What's your failure quotient? How many times can you take Nos, rejections before you give up determines your ultimate level of success. To have exponential success, you have to be willing to embrace numerous Nos, rejections, be comfortable with banging your nose & be prone to adapting with failures. Hard to believe but yes, this is the truth! A person's failure quotient determines how far he will go in life; whether he will achieve his/her unimaginable/scary dreams or not. I wish I was aware of this mathematics earlier when I started my journey and career! Probably I would have fulfilled many of my dreams/goals by now. Nevertheless, as it is said, you receive the lesson at the time when you are ready and willing, so I am grateful to be sitting in this awareness and truly accepting the fact that failing and being a failure are two different things. Successful people embrace the act of failing, they are willing to fail; they like to fail; but unsuccessful people stop themselves from failing any further, they avoid failures, they hold themselves back. After few bumps here and there, they quit. That's it!
I have always been a topper in my life. And every time I read stories like back-benchers making it to great heights and toppers being seen as someone not being able to make it big in life (statistics says so); I used to wonder why. Honestly, this pinched me too. Not that I didn't appreciate the success of the back-benchers, but pitied myself and my kinds. I used to feel very sad and even worthless for being a topper. I used to question myself as to why did I then put in efforts, burnt the mid-night oil etc., if toppers had to live a life of conformity?! Does it mean that hard-work, efforts didn't have a role to play?! Well, people who do well early in life get used to success and so they become very fearful of failures. They are fearful of rejections and Nos. So, they don't do anything that will sabotage their image of being topper, successful. The achiever's image is dear to them and throughout life, they live maintaining that. They never try out beyond their limits. Once they get what they wanted, they become complacent. One no, and they are doomed! One rejection and they can't handle it. So, they know how to underplay it. I failed to become a Doctor. I couldn't crack the entrance examination and this took a toll on me. The image of being a topper, an achiever; broke. I was under pressure to perform and focused all my energy on cracking it but with fear of failure. What if I didn't crack?! And yes, I didn't crack. It shattered me and I never tried again. I didn't know how to fail gracefully and I gave up. My failure quotient was lowest! One failure led me to give up my childhood dream! See that's why toppers don't become successful! Statistics are right! It has nothing to do with skills, potential; but your ability to embrace failures/rejections/Nos. When you don't take failures personally, you don't give up. You keep trying and trying till you get the yes. More the Nos, more is your validation to your inner commitment to yourself. May be my inner commitment to becoming a Doctor wasn't high and so my failure quotient to that was pretty low.
Pick up any successful person and look at their failure quotient. You will be amazed! They have more Nos, rejections, failures than you can even think of. Thomas Alva Edison failed 10,000 times before he discovered bulb, Allen Breed who invented airbags pursued 30 long years before his product was sold and accepted; Sara Blakely failed numerous times before she became the youngest self-made billionaire....The list is endless! We don't see their failures because once you achieve success, all that people remembers is the ultimate level that you are in. Your desire, willingness, eagerness, persistence to fail determines if your 'WHY' to achieve is strong enough or not. I thought success was to avoid failures, being cautious. But this is absolutely a wrong equation to follow. Success is to embrace failures. More the failures, more the chances of your success. To dig out the diamond, you will have to dirty your hands; to succeed, you have to embrace Nos.
So, ask yourself how many rejections have you faced in life? If the answer is No, you haven't tried enough to succeed. You are standing in your own way to greatness. Pike Syndrome is something I love. I am a victim of Pike syndrome. Google to know more about it. When you get conditioned and limit your actions/efforts because of past bad experiences, couple of failures/rejections and quit; that's called Pike's syndrome. As leaders also, when you reach a particular level in your career; you become very protective of your image and role. You refrain from failing, embracing Nos; you avoid failures; but you want you teams to try. Do you think they will? Absolutely not! They will eventually figure out that if you are afraid of something, they too will avoid that because they too seek security. Leaders who embrace Nos themselves; not only allow themselves to embrace their greatness but others too.
My new learning: Embrace Nos with greater velocity and be happy every time you get it. Let the answers unfold as you do this. I leave you to unravel this secret in your own good time. Do watch this awesome video to figure out yourself what your failure quotient is?!
Love & warmth, Priyanka
Coach to People Leaders, Start-up Founders & Transitioning professionals