I’M BACK, AND I’M DOING IT BY QUESTIONING FAILURE, WILL YOU LET ME?

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It’s been a few months since I posted and shared my experiences and concerns about people and entrepreneur initiatives with you here. Okay, so I’m back. These months have been tough, where the love of the people who care about me have helped me come back with the same illusion, willingness and energy that I had the 25th of November in 2014. Thank you for your support during these last months.

Today I want to present you two things: first, an initiative that I think I haven’t talked to you about yet, which I think it was about time, and the second one, and entirely related to that initiative, some thoughts about something I think it’s necessary to address with entrepreneur people: failure.

Are you ready?

Let’s start. The initiative it’s the program called ANDREkintzailea. It’s a program about accompaniment, formation and creativity for entrepreneur women promoted by the Territorial and Economic Development department of the District Council of Biscay. A program which third edition got published last 14th of April and whose goal is to support female entrepreneurship.

ANDREkintzalea consists of some training sessions, workshops, meetings, panel discussions, networking meetings, a number of events of different type and some sessions of customized coaching and mentoring. All of these together shape the program.

Bilbao Metrópoli-30, the Asociación de Empresarias y Directivas de Bizkaia, ADE, Emakumeekin and Peopleing take part on the design and development.

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Well, in those sessions organized by Peopleing, I was able to participate in one of them during the last week of September. I was invited by those responsible  Jone, Nora and Arantza, to give a lecture in BilboRock, an emblematic place for many people who live in Bilbao. During this lecture, whose title was “Questioning failure”, I had the pleasure of sharing the stage with Miren González de Mendialdua, whose story in first person made me think even more about failure and its positive consequences.foto-charla-cuestionando-el-fracaso

I have to confess that, personally, the preparation of the lecture and its posterior spread and debate on the media has been a unique opportunity that I have had to consider this topic very seriously. A topic that, since that day, I don’t have any doubts about (I didn’t even have them before).

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When I started preparing my contribution, my first stop was on the definition of the word “failure”. After talking to some entrepreneur people and discuss a little bit of the literature about that topic, I was able to see that there are two ways of understanding it, a negative one and a positive one. On the negative side, we see failure as:

  • an unfavorable result of a business or company
  • a barrier found on the change
  • getting a negative result on something projected
  • anxiety
  • resignation
  • not achieving what we had planned
  • frustration
  • making a mistake
  • not doing something
  • willingness to please everyone
  • being afraid of what others may say
  • not being successful

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On the other hand, on the positive side, we understand failure as:

  • persevere
  • a part of the process or way to success
  • a learning
  • an event
  • an opportunity to start something new or get better at something
  • a fight to achieve some goals (realistics, in any case)

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What is clear is that failure affects us, and as some people emphasize, it can make us have a hard time with ourselves. The thing is that when we face it, we have two alternatives: get over it or not. And, without any doubt, the best way to react is by getting over it on a positive way in order not to create psychological problems. And to do it we have to prepare ourselves thoroughly. How can we do this? We can achieve this through formation programs or courses of emotional management or self-knowledge, among others, which will help us know our limits, our strengths and weaknesses, our emotions and our capacities (especially the one to get over the hard times and take advantage of it to improve), or if we say it in a different way: our capacity to develop strength, a concept on trend nowadays and necessary at the same time.

And, of course, we have to learn from failing, which is not an easy task. So, to do it, first we should recognize that we have failed, which is almost more difficult, and after analyzing the situation on a “dispassionate” way, which is not an easy task either, we should draw relevant conclusions. And, obviously, we don’t have to worry about what impression we may have given or what may have the others thought or said about us.

Finally, I stay with this sentence I read some days ago:

To face failure we have to de-dramatise, because hardly ever is it true that “this is the worst thing that’s ever happened to me.”

Here you have the article that the newspaper DEIA dedicated to us about our participation on the ANDREkintzailea program.

I hope you liked today’s post, and if you have, I hope we keep meeting on this space.

Enjoy this week.

Translated by María Ubierna Quintanilla and supervised by Arantza Arruti.

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