Have you failed lately? 7 Reasons You Should Try to Fail...

Therapists: Try to Fail Today

Therapists: Try to Fail Today

If you haven't failed lately, we might have a problem... It is tricky isn't it? As we get older, wiser- we can get more risk averse. That risk aversion is what makes our car insurance rates go down, and gives us better professional judgement. 

What happens when the risk aversion goes too far? 

I talk to Master's and Doctorate educated people daily who are truly fearful of putting their thoughts down on paper. The fear is very rationally explained and explored, but at the end of the day... what does it really boil down to? It boils down to a fear of failure. 

Educated therapists fearful that their professional judgment will fail them... fearful that nobody will want to hear what they have to say... Even though their work is centered around people paying them a large sum of money to explore with them, to hear their feedback. 

If you haven't failed lately, try today. 

If you haven't done anything scary or outside of your comfort zone lately, give it a try. Decide in advance that you are going to fail, and you are going to fail big. Revel in it, have fun with it, enjoy it! 

7 Reasons You Should Try to Fail:

  1. Failing means you are trying something new
  2. Failing teaches you new things
  3. Sometimes what feels like failing isn't actually failing
  4. You need to get comfortable being imperfect
  5. Failing is an opportunity to explore your vulnerability
  6. Sometimes when you expect to fail, you actually succeed. 
  7. When you get over the fear of failing, the world becomes more fun

Here are tips for failing big and having fun while you do it: 

Fail with flair. 

Newsflash-I'm not an amazing dancer. I can shake my hips ok, but I didn't take dance as a child, never been in a recital, and do my best to look bored when learning line dancing or Zumba even though my brain is frantically trying to keep up and not trip. 

But, if I'm ever asked to into the middle of a dance circle- I'm going... and I'm doing it with flair... I've got my own signature dance move that is hysterical, completely uncool, and makes people laugh (actually I have TWO!). Sometimes it is ok to plan to fail creatively and have a good laugh along the way. 

Fail with a friend. 

I'm reminded of an awesome blog post I read about how to throw a great pity party recently. One of my favorite tips was to bring a friend along. Having a friend who is wiling to try something new with you, fail with you, talk you down off a cliff, or talk you into taking a risk can make your world a sweeter place. 

Surround yourself with at least a few people who aren't willing to let you be too safe. A few people who will challenge you to get outside of your comfort zone in a way that honors who you are. Introverts, choose carefully- you need someone who "gets you" and will challenge you in ways that mesh with your style of risk-taking! 

Fail with Purpose

I get to talk to passionate therapists in private practice daily who are trying to figure out private practice marketing. Well, that isn't exactly true. Most of them don't care about marketing their psychotherapy practice. What they really care about it is helping transform the world. They have just realized (and they are bummed about it) that marketing is necessary task. (Although they'd say marketing is a necessary evil!). 

If you are going to take a risk where you might fail, make sure there is a purpose, a reason, a mission behind it. Know your deep down "why" and let that be the fire that moves you forward when it's scary. Or, as some of my clients like to say, behind closed doors of course, "when sh*t gets real. 

Go out today and attempt to fail! Make it happen! Post your attempt to fail in the comments below. How will you commit to attempting to fail this week? 

Miranda Palmer

My mission is to move Masters in Counseling Psychology and Masters in Social Worker out of the two top spots for worst paid master's degrees in the United States. I'm a therapist, what we do matters deeply. People walk around thinking there isn't the kind of help you provide. People every day decide not to pursue therapy because they can't find a good therapist. I teach therapists private practice marketing because it matters- it helps communities experience healing and support.