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  • Writer's pictureTanushree Joshi

Failure and I: Reflections post our Circle

Updated: Jun 12, 2023

The 'could have's, the 'should have's, the 'what if's, the 'I wish'

The pain, the shame it brings with it

Is this what failure is?

An emotion or a set of those we feel when something doesn't go as we had intended?

The fear, the shying away, reprimanding.. berating

'What's wrong with me!' 'I should've known better!'

'I always make a mess of things and regret it later!'


But wait a minute... Was I the only one responsible for the outcome? Were my expectations considerate of the circumstances and my current limitations?


But wait a minute... Aren't success and failure two sides of the same coin and so subjective?

Aren't they different ways in which an experience can pan out?

Aren't they both teachers of equal measures and ways to grow further?


Then why the pain, the shame,

The berating, the regret?

Why the fear of taking another chance

To open up and leap and prance?


Why not sit with love in our hearts

To see what we did well

And what's left to learn?


Failing and making mistakes is a universal experience,

but it doesn't have to make us feel like a failure

The inability to learn and grow from it

Or to do anything right ever again


I choose to pull out the "second arrow" and embrace myself with love instead.

Be present to emotions I'm experiencing,

Hold space for the learnings that emerge

And have faith in myself


A man feeling the heat and pressure after a setback
Failing doesn't mean we are a failure. Every endeavour has two outcomes - success or learning.

In July of 2022, i was invited to co-host a circle on 'Failure and I'. It was an excellent opportunity to hold space authentically and vulnerably for my self as much as for others to see what my relationship with the concept of "failure" has been like and how I can reframe it.


While preparing for the circle, I came across this beautiful video celebrating failure in life and was greatly inspired. I still struggle with the difficult emotions that have become part and parcel with the idea of failure in my mind. Still, resources and spaces such as these are a beneficial reminder that I can rework that thought process and eventually that emotional reaction.


I feel deeply grateful for the constant reminders and encouragement I receive from people in the movement that it's ok to be me and pass on this encouragement to whoever needs it!


Go try out new things. You may get them right or not, but you'll surely learn and grow a lot and feel amazing about yourself that you held the courage to try!

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