Feeling like a failure isn’t uncommon. But, unfortunately, many of us have a tendency to misinterpret the concept of “failing” with “being a failure”. So, while it’s normal to feel like a failure from time to time, if you often feel disappointed in yourself, you may be suffering from “failure lifetrap.”
Do you find yourself constantly feeling like a failure?
If you find yourself constantly feeling like a failure, you might avoid some of the greatest opportunities in life. For example, feeling like a failure will deprive you of advancing in your career, finding the ideal life partner, and building a happy life for yourself.
Before long, feeling like a failure will get you in trouble. This type of self-destructive behavior will push you into the wrong job, a bad relationship, alienation, deprivation, and a depressed state of mind.
The good news is that you can break out of feeling like you’ve failed at everything. I have done my research to help you deal with feeling like a failure.
Reasons for feeling like a failure
If you feel like a failure, it may be an accurate assessment of what’s happening in your life, or it could be your perception of the world around you. For example, you might feel that your peers have accomplished more in life, that you’re less qualified than your colleagues in your profession or that you’re not as smart as the people around you.
You might, for instance, feel like a complete failure when you compare your life to what you see on your social media accounts. It’s easy to feel like a failure when everyone seems to have more fun, success, and love than you.
You might feel like a failure if you feel:
- Rejected by a partner
- Forgotten by a friend
- Unloved by a family member
- Denied a job opportunity
- Ignored by a potential partner
- Unappreciated by an employer
Your feelings of failure may relate more to your perception of an event rather than the event itself.
Can a successful person feel like a failure?
Unfortunately, even successful people suffer from feeling like a failure. Logically, it seems impossible to feel like a failure when you are generally a successful person, but it’s still quite common.
Some of us have an uncanny talent for selling us the idea that we have failed, even if it’s untrue.
You may feel that you are a failed partner, even if you have been in a working relationship for a while. Possibly, you might believe other people believe you to be smarter than you are. You think you’ve somehow deceived your employer into hiring you and worry about being found out. This type of thinking is often called imposter syndrome.
Your failures might be real or a product of your imagination. Either way, your mind creates the world you live in. If you feel like a complete failure, sooner or later, it will have a negative effect on your life and the lives of the people around you.
What is the origin of feeling like a failure?
Feeling like a failure is probably as old as humanity itself. The words “feeling” and “failure” go hand-in-hand in our lives. Regardless of how much success we have in our lives, the feeling of failure is never too far away.
Why do we feel like a failure even when we are successful?
Unfortunately, even success can make you question your accomplishments. Feeling like a failure is just another way to accept success—this type of thinking questions your accomplishments.
Instead of celebrating your accomplishments, you might feel more comfortable emphasizing your weaknesses. If you want to feel like a complete failure, don’t acknowledge how resilient, savvy, and focused you are.
If you want to stop feeling like a complete failure, it’s time to stop comparing your weaknesses to someone else’s strengths. And instead of reliving moments of defeat, focus on the steps you can take toward success.
How does feeling like a failure influence your life?
Nothing will make you fail faster than feeling like a failure. Dealing with failure is normal, but feeling like you’ve failed at everything isn’t. If anything, feeling like a complete failure all the time is self-destructive.
Whether you quit your job, shut down your dream business, or gained weight when you were trying to do the opposite, it’s easy to feel like you’ve failed at everything. Every goal you can’t reach seems even more difficult when viewed as a failure.
When you allow yourself to feel like a failure for too long, the consequences are always painful. Feeling like a failure is coupled with a prolonged period of depression, anxiety and stress. Unfortunately, guilt and shame aren’t far either. Once constant failure is in your vocabulary, it’s hard to escape the voice telling you, “You will always be a failure.”
The saddest part about this type of thinking is that it’s is self-imposed. For the most part, it’s the creation of your own thoughts. What seems like a nagging whisper can shake the very foundation of your confidence, harming you in countless ways.
You must reject this self-destructive voice. Never allow it to make you feel down about yourself, and trust your abilities to help you succeed.
How do you know if you are a failure?
If you accept that you are a failure, you will fail in life. The only time you fail in life is when you think you are failing. But, as long as you are not giving up, you are not failing.
You know you are failing when you:
- Hate your job, and you are unable to make a career change
- Don’t get beyond dreaming about what you want
- Never take action or give up too soon on your goals
- Are filled with regret about your personal and professional life
- Look back on your life and contemplate all of the missed opportunities, and you immediately get depressed and think, “I’ve failed at everything in life.”
Failure or success in life is always a subjective condition. Thus, having the same Python developer job for ten years would be a success for one person. While learning JAVA to get a new job will be deemed a success for someone else.
What does it mean when you think you are a failure?
When you say “I feel like a failure,” it implicitly means that you had goals you failed to achieve. But failure is never absolute. If you use failure as a source of motivation, you will achieve your goals. That’s because it’s never too late to achieve your goals.
Therefore, you should always think of failure as a temporary condition. It’s not the final measure of your accomplishment. Treat it as a neutral event. Don’t allow your emotions to paint it in a negative light. As long as you keep failing, you are trying, and it’s the only way to succeed.
What makes you a failure in life?
Lack of persistence can make you feel like you are a failure in life, but it doesn’t end there.
There are many views, thoughts, and behaviors that can make you feel like a failure in life, such as:
- Comparing your life to others – If you constantly compare your life to the lives of others, you will always feel like a complete failure.
- Overthinking and overplanning – When you overthink and over plan your life, you will lose confidence in your skills. What’s worse, overthinking will stop you from taking action.
- Saying no to new experiences – You will fail if you say no to new experiences.
- Unable to move on after failure – Being unable to move on after a failure will make you a failure in life. The people who succeed in life refuse to give up.
What makes you a failure in school?
A lack of trying makes you a failure in school. Don’t believe that grades don’t matter if you don’t want to fail in school. If you practice self-discipline, you are more likely to succeed. Beyond good grades, working hard in school will also help you in life. It will help you avoid failure not just in school but at work and in life.
You should also remember, that schools are set up with one type of student in mind. It’s a system created for one particular kind of student. Unfortunately, we cannot all fit. But, failing in school doesn’t have to define you as a person. It won’t stop you from succeeding after school. You could still have a successful career, or you could start a successful business, even if you fail in school
What makes you a failure at work?
Not fitting in makes you a failure at work. But just because you don’t fit, it doesn’t mean you are a failure in life.
If you fail at work, you might be in the wrong job. But, on the other hand, sometimes failing is just a sign. It tells you to move on to another job, career, or company.
What can I do when I feel like a failure?
When you feel like a failure, the best thing to do is to let go of the negativity. Of course, that doesn’t mean that you should celebrate every time you fail, but you should beat yourself up, either.
The worst thing you can do is drain your motivation after failing. Instead, you should focus on what you need to do to improve your chances for success the next time you try. As long as you refuse to hold a negative perception of yourself, you are in good shape to move on with the right state of mind.
Focus on the effort you’ve made, not on this one instance of a failed attempt.
How do you feel less like a failure?
One of the best ways to feel less like a failure is to focus on your accomplishments. If you are dealing with a failure, it’s best to detach emotion. Look at it objectively. What if you were hired to look at it as a consultant? Would you look at it any differently?
If you want to feel less like a failure, it’s important to forgive yourself. Be kind to yourself. Beating yourself up after you’ve failed won’t help. It will only make you more stressed about the situation.
Give yourself time to process what happened. Then, get ready to move forward. Perhaps you want to make another run at the task you couldn’t pull off, or you might want to set a new goal. The point here is that you need to move forward.
How to change your mind to stop feeling like a failure?
You can change your mind to stop feeling like a failure, but you should remember that the mind is hardwired to resist change. That’s because part of the brain, the amygdala, interprets change, even the desire to stop feeling like a failure, as a threat and releases the hormones for fear, fight, or flight. That’s why so many people struggle to stop feeling like a failure.
Just remember that if you are determined to stop feeling like a failure, you can push your mind to do what you want it to achieve.