Can we be thankful for failure?


This week I was in California celebrating the holiday with my family and friends. It was quite an experience to visit "home" when home is now Seattle! Isn't it interesting how quickly life can change? 

I was thinking about how lucky I was to be able to move to Seattle when we were called to do so, and have an income, doing something I loved, that followed me! While it was incredibly painful saying goodbye to my private practice clients, it took away the fear knowing that I would still be "ok" financially as I shifted my role in my practice. 

And, as I was sitting for a few moments, I had a moment to reflect on the question: How did I get here? 

Well the truth is, I am where I am today because I am a failure. The truth is, I failed my 2nd MFT exam in California. I remember how sad and embarassed I felt. I was frustrated, and a bit hopeless... (And, I happened to be going to a family event directly after... talk about a horrible day!)

You see, I had always been successful, and here I was stuck. All of a sudden I had to take 6 months to re-examine my life, my knowledge-based, and my readiness for licensure before I could take the exam again and for my life to move forward (or so I thought). 

Looking back, I can see that my failure spurred me on. 

The truth is, I did what most successful people do when they fail. I got sad. I got mad. And then, I got up. I got moving!

I developed the idea for an online study group. I figured other people would be feeling as hopeless, confused, and alone as I was- and I was right! I figured out how to market an online community, how to get people connected, how to sustain it... and it was the best thing I ever did. 

When I got a letter saying the test had a problem, that my score had been overturned and I was eligible to be licensed- it didn't really matter in the grand sense. I had finally figured out who I was, my true value, and stopped looking to others to validate my worth. 

And, as the word started to spread, I realized that I wasn't alone. That most of were dealing with the exact same issues- all over California, and later, all over the United States. That failure is what led me done the path to leading first pre-licensed therapists, and then licensed therapists, and then small business owners of all kinds. 

Helping people know that they can live out their true purpose is my true passion. And failure is what got me there. Has a failure sidetracked you? Know that you can move forward! Can you see where previous failures or bad experiences are benefitting your life today? Take a moment to just explore both sides of the failure.