Five Steps to Learning from Failure and Moving Forward


Practicing self-compassion and becoming more adaptive in coping can improve your well-being. These resources and activities will help you reduce the spiral of negative thinking to help guard against additional self-induced stress.

The following five steps can help you handle failure and adversity as an athlete:

1. Learn about the power of self-compassion and how it can help you overcome challenges (4 mins)

In this short podcast clip, learn how a mix of self-compassion and self-confidence can make you more resilient in the face of failure.

2. An exercise to help you cultivate self-compassion

Even the kindest people can be too tough on themselves. Does this sound like you? Grab some paper and take a few minutes to reflect on how you speak to your friends versus how you speak to yourself.

3. How to turn negative thoughts into positive ones

A better attitude toward this type of stress has many benefits, but that can be hard to flip a switch and do. Many of the top professional athletes result to breathing exercises to help them find their center. Consistency in performance comes from consistency in preparation.

4. An exercise to help you recognize stressors, categorize your responses, and make a plan

We all experience stress, but our responses to it vary. With this breathing activity, boost your stress management expertise by taking a personal inventory of your stress response:

Take two quick breaths in through your nose then out through your mouth, try it for a count of 10 and see how you feel.

5. An exercise to shift your perspective and empower yourself when dealing with setbacks

Use the 3 P's to help grow resilience:

Playing hard

In this work, try reminding yourself: “I recognize the challenge and will use adversity as motivation to rise to the occasion.”