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What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Stronger:
How to Be Inspired by Defeat


By Jacob Dillon

When you feel upset because you have just failed at something, that feeling of “being down” is usually not just a feeling but rather a collection of negative emotions that manages to clog your mind. That is why defeat is often overwhelming – it puts us in a difficult situation from which we have to get out.

Truthfully, most people I’ve met are lacking self-awareness, meaning that they do not understand why their failures affect them. Besides this being a matter of perspective, they cannot differentiate the negative emotions that overwhelm them after they’ve failed.

When you’re being “put down” by your defeats, you’ll need to know exactly what strategies to use to get out of that state as soon as possible.

In this post, I’m sharing some simple yet insightful tips not just to overcome your defeats but also to leverage them in empowering ways.

Perceive Failure as Feedback

The biggest problem when it comes to dealing with defeats is the fact that most people perceive them as something terrible.

Successful individuals, though, see failure as feedback. Your actions and decisions will influence an outcome. Whether that outcome is positive or negative, it depends on your perspective. When you succeed, you don’t have to worry. When you fail, you’ll often worry even though you shouldn’t because what happened is merely a result of the wrong actions.

If you want to change the result in the future, change your actions, behavior, mindset, and decisions and you’ll end up in a different place. Simple as that!

Never Ignore Your Defeats – Use Them Instead

If you ignore your defeats, it’s quite normal to feel bad. Every feeling that you repress is going to come back and haunt you even harder. Not to mention that they all add up, and at some point, they’ll burst and will make you feel like your life is over.

If you use your failures to learn something new each time they happen, you’ll find yourself progressing each day. Personally or professionally, it’s the same thing. When you focus on doing better, you’ll be triggering constant growth.

Go Through Some Inspiratioal Quotes

Even though this advice might sound cheap, it’s incredibly useful for some. Go ahead and check out some inspirational and motivational quotes and see how that makes you feel. More often than not, we tend to ignore the bigger picture and focus on our present (and often small) problems. If quotes don’t help you, perhaps you could try watching a motivational video.

Work on The Aspect that Made You Fail

Right after you fail, start seeking the causes that made you fail. Let’s say that you have failed an exam. What could be the cause? Well, you may have allowed yourself to be distracted a day before, you might have taken too less time to study, or you might have been experienced a lack of confidence that you’ve never witnessed before.

When you decide what caused the dissatisfying result, start working on that aspect. Improve it, take it to new heights, and make sure it doesn’t bother you ever again.

Establish New Goals and Expectations

“A great way to recover from defeats is to toughen up and establish new goals and expectations for the future. Obviously, you should strive to do better by choosing higher goals that’ll inspire and motivate you to keep pushing forward regardless of the difficulties and challenges you encounter.” – Jane Fax, CEO at EssayOnTime.

However, unless you truly commit to these goals, everything’s going to be in vain. If you keep mistreating your objectives and you keep procrastinating on them, you’ll build a negative habit, a disastrous cycle that’ll put you down and keep you stuck until you use a great deal of strength to get out!

Realize that Everything’s Temporary

Everything’s temporary, everything changes, nothing remains the same. If you realize that, you won’t feel depressed or anxious when failing. You will perceive it as normality, and you’ll understand that it’ll pass. Of course, that doesn’t mean you should ignore the fact that you failed. Use the previous tips to get back on track while acknowledging that your thoughts, feelings, and actions will consistently change as time goes by.


Failing is a normal side of our lives, and as much as we’d like to avoid them, it’ll always hit us back. The more we ignore our failures the faster we’ll end up being miserable, overwhelmed, and eventually depressed. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger – don’t forget that and keep your head high no matter what!

Jacob Dillon Author bio:
Jacob Dillon has 5 years of experience of content management and editing in a publishing agency in Sydney. He is also a professional journalist and content writer in such topics as education, career growth, technological advancements and social media. Feel free to connect with him on Twitter and Facebook.
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