How to Deal with Setbacks And Use Them for Future Success

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Sometimes, everything seems to fall apart, leaving you trying to figure out what to do next in the journey of life. While there is a thought of throwing everything and walking away, take a second to think about those who have been there and still succeeded in dealing with setbacks and using them as stepping stones for future success.

Often, the fear of failing is more than the Courage you will need to win. You might have tried a number of times, but the more you try, the more the failing won’t stop. 

Other times, you feel you’re insufficient, incapable, or unworthy. Your head is often filled with thoughts like “I’m not really the right fit for this job or this course, or “Maybe I just can’t stop making mistakes?” Maybe I’m a failure”. 

Well, before you continue on this journey of becoming a Phoenix, I want you to know that you do not have to let your experience define who you are.

Setbacks are only a limitation for a short period. It is staying back on the ground that is the real failure.

You should consider failure as a ladder to success rather than an end to your planned achievement.

One who hasn’t failed hasn’t really lived because failure is a part of living.

And do you know that failure is a blessing in disguise? 

Embracing Failure is not celebrating defeat. Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors. That is why I want to show you how to deal with setbacks and use them for future success.

10 Ways Setbacks Can Lead to Success

1. Failure builds Resilience

10 Ways Setbacks Can Lead to Success

One is that Failure builds Resilience
Source: The Mindest

Your ability to embrace setbacks would help you build mental toughness, especially when you have a winning spirit which every champion must cultivate first in his/her mind. 

Resilience is a simple understanding of your ability to recover quickly from adversity. Your resilience would build a mental toughness for you to rise again and keep pushing.

2. Failure builds Humility

Most proud statements are fostered by people who have never failed, and the ones who have never failed are the ones who have never tried to achieve anything. 

Failure is inevitable as long as you’re on the path of goal achievement. See Eight steps in achieving your goals. 

Failure and goal achievement are synonymous. As one fails, they get even more humble to know why and how they can get better, thereby giving room to be teachable and there is by promoting openness for feedback and growth.

3. Failure gives insights through trial and error

When one has failed in something, he learns another way to achieve that same thing. Edison would say: “I haven’t failed, I have only learned 1000 ways that cannot work”. 

The more you try and fail, the more you learn the ways that cannot work and the way which can work. 

It gives you a broad insight into what you want to achieve and other things you want to do. You also can encourage others through your achievement. 

Let me tell you a short story.

One time, I almost gave up on going back to college. I have dropped out of college twice from two different courses. 

I gave excuses for myself each time I am asked why I have yet to finish college with my set.

Until I found someone who inspired me through his own story, he had written the college entrance exams more than six times and wasn’t offered admission to study the course of his dreams. 

For me, I was given classes I didn’t want to offer. That’s why I kept dropping out. But his story made me sit up, encouraging me to put more effort into my studies, and today I’m a law school graduate. 

4. Failure fosters Personal Development

Failure fosters Personal Development
Source: Forbes

Each trial and attempt failed builds up the attributes of patience to do it better the next time, empathy towards others who have been trying but keep failing, and in general, builds self-awareness. 

Setbacks prompt understanding our limitations and overcoming obstacles that motivate personal growth. 

5. Failure guides decision-making

How to Deal with Setbacks And Use Them for Future Success
How to Deal with Setbacks And Use Them for Future Success

Outcomes are a result of our decisions. Setback gives room for better decisions in the future. 

It builds the ability to think through and deeply to make better decisions than the ones you have previously made.

6. Failure leads to Innovation:

Many Success Stories and genius of the world resulted from failed attempts that inspired them to think creatively, leading to breakthrough ideas that the world celebrates today.

7. Failure fosters Problem-Solving

Failure fosters Problem-Solving
Source: Linkedln

On the journey of Success after having risen from failure, weaknesses are highlighted, and errors are noted, leading to innovative ways of problem-solving.

8. Failure encourages Revaluation

Failure encourages the Revaluation of what success thoroughly means to you, most times, what we define as success is not actually what success is. 

Letting the world define success for you is what makes people depressed and count their little achievements as not success. 

Setbacks give you room to re-evaluate what success means first before considering any other person. 

Ultimately setbacks help us redefine our goals and forge a stronger sense of self. 

9. Failure gives you an opportunity to learn 

Failure gives you an opportunity to learn 
Source: Sitepoint

From failing, setbacks, whatever name you choose to call it, learning from failure would give you a chance to become stronger and better. 

The lesson taught by the experience of setbacks pushes you to want to conquer, and in the push, you go beyond the hidden virtue inside you.

10. Failure gives room for self-discovery: 

Exploring new approaches lead to the revelation of untapped potential. Setbacks challenge our comfort zones, forcing us to adapt and learn.

Through setbacks, we unearth hidden strength and resilience. 

Having known that Success and Setbacks are two sides of the same coin. Would you like to know how you can embrace failure for success? 

If your answer is Yes, it only means you have to follow through so that at the end of this article, you would build the resilience to keep moving because you would know how to turn failure into success.

How to Deal with Setbacks And Use Them for Future Success

1. Embrace Your Emotions.

How to Deal with Setbacks And Use Them for Future Success

Embrace Your Emotions.
Source: Canva

The first step to embracing Failure as a path of achievement is embracing your emotions. Acknowledging how you feel after a setback. 

It’s ok to feel sad, embarrassed, angered, ashamed, etc label your emotions and allow yourself to experience them. But stay focused on your emotions.

2. Remove your focus from what is wrong.

We are often drawn to think of what is not working with an intention to get rid of it, and we dwell so much on thinking of what is not working for too long that we fail to move forward.

One of the most important questions to ask yourself during setbacks is: What have I learned from these experiences( from myself to my business and career)? 

What do I have to stop doing to avoid making the same mistake in the future? 

3. Be Opened to Change

Be Opened to Change

Allow your mindset to evolve. Start by setting new and personalized boundaries for yourself. 

Be willing to be present; don’t bother too much about what you would do to accomplish success. Focus on the now.

This would allow you to strategize and respond to the outcomes in the future. 

4. Change Your Perspective

Instead of allowing failure and setbacks to get at you, set them as a necessary part of your learning process to succeed. 

Choose to start with a positive affirmation method. Start by removing that question that keeps getting the best part of you. 

Change why do I always fail to I don’t fail. Change the way you visualize setbacks. 

5. Learn to appreciate your little accomplishment.

There are chances that you need to give yourself more credit for the things you’ve been able to achieve throughout your life. 

Take time to look at your past glories. The things you’ve achieved in the past. Be proud of yourself. 

This would help you to improve the value you bring to yourself and the people around you and build your self-confidence.

From building your self-confidence, you can fight failure and seek personal development.

6. Always visualize success no matter the number of setbacks.

When you go on to try again, do not try again with a double mind. Visualize success from the onset. 

Dream about what you plan to achieve. Dreaming about it is not wrong. Work towards making your dream a reality by taking action. Stay motivated through your dreams till you win. 

7. Realize that you are a successful leader. 

Only you can define yourself. This is quite simple. Take an inventory of yourself. 

We tend to reflect more on the negatives rather than the positives. 

No moment is too small. Let go of past traumas, unfavorable experiences, and perceived failures. 

Get a book. Take a journal of the years you’ve lived. Check your growth progress every five years to the present. Do not put down judgments. Put down only achievements and be happy with how far you’ve come.


The journey of embracing setbacks as a stepping stone to success is a powerful reminder that setbacks are not roadblocks but serve as opportunities for success. 

By reframing setbacks as opportunities for growth, you unlock your full potential.

Each setback becomes a note in the symphony of achievement, creating an inspiring story and melody of growth, development, and accomplishment. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How do you turn failure into success?

Here are five tips that can help turn failure into success
Face your fear head on. It’s critical to prioritize your goals and ambitions over your concerns.
Take a rest. Even if things do not work out, it is not the end of the world.
Continue to establish goals. Failure can be crippling.
Maintain your attention.
Fail as a team.

What setbacks teach us?

Setbacks, those unanticipated disturbances that put our goals off track, have an amazing way of revealing our actual nature. They serve as mirrors, accurately reflecting both our strengths and weaknesses. But here’s the catch: these times of adversity include great lessons and possibilities for growth.
When we experience setbacks, we are forced to rethink, readjust, and recommit. They push us out of our comfort zones, accepting discomfort as a necessary step toward progress.

What are the benefits of dealing with failure?

Here are the seven surprising benefits of failure.
1. Failure teaches valuable lessons.
2. Failure keeps us hungry and humble.
3. Failure Aids in the Overcome of Fear.
4. Failure recommits us to our goals.
5. Failure inspires innovative solutions.
6 Failure strengthens our support system.
7. Failure makes us more valuable mentors.

What effect does failure have on a person?

1. Failure tricks your mind into thinking things that aren’t true.
2. Failures will immobilize, demotivate, and restrict your chances of success in the future unless you learn to respond to them in psychologically appropriate ways.

Who said failure is the key to success?

Morihei Ueshib
Failure is the key to success; each mistake teaches us something.

How do you overcome failure?

Here are some things you may do to help you deal with failure:
1. Accept your emotions.
2. Take a little pause.
3. Put the occurrence in context.
4. Look for new things to learn.
5. Accept accountability and obligation.
6. Talk about the occurrence.
7. Research solutions and behavioral models.
8. Make a plan.

How do you accept failure and move on?

Top tips for coping with failure
1. Give yourself permission to feel.
2. Practice self-compassion.
3. Reflect on the experience and adopt a growth mindset.
4. Revisit your goals and create a plan for the future.

How do I rebuild my life after failure?

How to Get Over Failure — and Regain Your Confidence
1. Make use of your to-do list to increase your self-esteem.
2. Distain your worth from your work.
3. Form a mutual support group and rely on it.
4. Remember that no one cares as much about your failures as you do.
5. Be wary of burnout.
6. Have faith in your ability to succeed in the future.

Precious Ifeoma is an aspiring lawyer interested in Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, and International Human Rights. She’s an advocate of SDG 1, 2 and 4. She enjoys reading about psychology, watching movies, and listening to music.

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