Just the word “failure” can send shivers up and down our spine. If you’re like me and many of my clients, you’re probably not a big fan of failing. However, if you think about some of your biggest failures in life, haven’t they taught you a great deal and been extremely valuable to your growth, your development, and even your happiness in hindsight?

Failure itself isn’t the real issue; it’s our relationship to and our fear of failure that causes us pain and frustration. Think of what your life, your relationships, and your career would be like if you were not afraid to fail? For most of us, this would make things very different.

No risk, no reward! Michael Jordan said, “I missed 100% of the shots that I didn’t take.” We rarely regret what we do. We mostly regret the things we don’t do; especially the ones we are scared to do.

On our path of life, growth, and success, we all encounter failure. Some of the most successful people who have ever walked the planet have failed miserably, publicly, and in ways that many of us would not be able to recover from. What if we actually appreciated failing? Remember, appreciating something doesn’t necessarily mean we like or enjoy it. Appreciation means that we recognize the value of something and are grateful for it.

Here is a list of some things we can appreciate when we fail:

- Failure often gives us important feedback about where we are
- Failure gives us contrast and can make success that much more meaningful
- Failure usually involves taking a risk, which is something we can acknowledge ourselves for and be proud of
- Failure is usually a great opportunity for learning, growth, and improvement
- Failure gives us an opportunity to love ourselves, even when we don’t do or get what we want

By learning to appreciate ourselves when we fail and appreciate the failure itself, we take our power back from situations, circumstances, and the opinions of other people in our lives. Our ability to appreciate failure, learn from it, and use it to our advantage, gives us an important insight into how to create success in a conscious and deliberate way. Appreciating failure is a key to success and fulfillment.


Make a list of some of the biggest failures in your life – things from the past or things that are currently happening. What can you appreciate about each of these failures? What did you learn? What feedback did you get? How did failing in this way enhance your life? If you look for it, you’ll be able to find many things to appreciate about your failures. Appreciating your failures will allow you alter your relationship to failing, let go of some of the fear you have about it, and ultimately create more success in your life!

Author's Bio: 

Personal development expert Mike Robbins is a sought-after keynote speaker, workshop leader, and author who empowers people to appreciate themselves, others, and life. He is a former professional baseball player turned speaker, author, and life coach who works with individuals and organizations of all kinds. He is the author of the audio program, “The Power of Appreciation” and the new book, FOCUS ON THE GOOD STUFF. Feel free to visit his websiteS at or, or contact him at