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Is Failure Necessary for Success?

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Question 1 : Failure is the best teacher a person can have in preparation for life.
“Success is the ability to go from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm” by Sir Winston Churchill, "All my successes have been built on my failures" by Benjamin Disraeli, “I have not failed. I 've just found 10,000 ways that won 't work" by Thomas Edison and “Failure is only the opportunity to begin again, only this time more wisely” by Henry Ford (“Inspirational Quotes.” n.d.). These are few of the many quotes proclaiming the necessity of going through failure in order to have a good foundation for a successful life. While it is widely accepted that failure does propel one to achieve success, its consequences on the physiological, emotional and psychological well-being of many individuals are often overlooked.
Many parents encourage their children to excel in sports despite repeated failures because they believe it gives a strong foundation towards discipline needed later in life. This excellent approach cannot be totally refuted as it is the driving force behind sporting legends such as Datuk Nicol David, Datuk Lee Chong Wei and many other local and international athletes who are motivated to strive towards their goals despite numerous setbacks. However, not much attention is given to the majority of children who repeatedly fail in their desire to achieve such success. These unfortunate children may push themselves physically to train to the point of exhaustion, especially when their developing bodies are unable to take such pressure. Some may even resort to steroid and other substance abuse that can be dangerous to their health in the long run. This demonstrates how continuous failure at an early stage of life can be detrimental to the physiological well being of an individual.
The role of teachers and parents in the academic success of children is particularly influential as they constantly empower children to have a positive emotional attitude towards failure. Children learn to accept the inevitability of failure and are taught various constructive ways to handle future mistakes effectively. As they learn from one mistake to another, these children develop their self-confidence and evolve to become emotionally grounded young people who constantly find ways to overcome setbacks. Nevertheless, many teenagers these days do not develop the right balance of self-esteem necessary to become emotionally intelligent adults. Their constant struggle to rise above failure can backfire when teenagers develop so much desire to succeed that they lack the empathy to understand the feelings of people around them. While these young adults can progress to be materially successful in their endeavors, their lack of emotional aptitude may result in the loss of close interpersonal relationships with their loved ones, as well as the lack of ability to develop and maintain healthy relationships with others. Hence, emphasizing the necessity to accept and overcome failure at any cost can create negative consequences that impact the holistic emotional well-being of an individual. Motivational gurus such as Anthony Robbins and Robert Kiyosaki tout failure as the first step to success in their books and seminars (Luty, 2011). Such inspiration has served well for many individuals including presidents, actors, businessmen and sportsmen who have found the strength to carry on despite professional and personal losses. On the contrary, this approach does not work well with those who are deeply depressed and traumatized by years of repeated painful incidences in their lives such as rape, abuse and poverty. A form of “learned helplessness” takes over the psychological mindset of these individuals where they have been conditioned to accept their failures and refuse to improve their lives under any circumstance. In this manner, failure just reinforces many people to accept their fate and mentally demotivates them even further.
Although it is said that failure is the stepping stone to the success of many individuals, consideration must be given to the harmful physical, emotional and mental consequences that come with a constant stream of breakdowns in life. By regularly emphasizing on the perspective that failure is an important element for success, the focus on addressing the cause for failure often goes unnoticed. Therefore, more attention should be given to eradicate the root of failure because it affects individuals in various negative ways. In conclusion, failure is not necessarily vital for preparation in life.

References Inspirational Quotes Organized by Subject (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.inspirationalspark.com/ Luty, K. (2011). The Top Success Tip – Find a Mentor and Be Teachable. Retrieved from http://ezinearticles.com/?The-Top-Success-Tip---Find-a-Mentor-and-Be-Teachable&id=3579059

References: Inspirational Quotes Organized by Subject (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.inspirationalspark.com/ Luty, K. (2011). The Top Success Tip – Find a Mentor and Be Teachable. Retrieved from http://ezinearticles.com/?The-Top-Success-Tip---Find-a-Mentor-and-Be-Teachable&id=3579059

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