How to Keep Fighting in the Face of Failure

Guest columnist James Chin is a professional poker player who has previously written about flow, having the courage to change, and the truth about success. In this post, he examines how best to dust yourself off and try again.

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The feeling of failure sucks.

Failure demotivates and saps the energy of even the most confident of people, especially if they’re not receiving some sort of positive feedback from their day.

It’s an old relationship cliche that you should never go to bed upset with your significant other. Waking up upset the next day just serves to reinforce negative feelings you have between each other. Use this advice in your relationship to yourself.

I’ve come up with a way to make sure I don’t get too down and can bounce back sooner than later. It’s simple:  take time to create that positive feedback. You’ll be much more likely to wake up the next day motivated and ready to be productive and tackle whatever life may throw at you.  Here’s how:

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Better Than Optimal

Guest columnist James Chin is a professional poker player who has previously written about flow, having the courage to change, and the importance of self-awareness. In today’s post, he examines the often overlooked components of success. 

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When people talk about success they often focus on the qualities of persistence and resilience. As Woody Allen would say, 90% of success is just showing up.

But to be successful at anything requires four personal qualities, not two: persistence, resilience, reality-testing, and adaptability. These roughly correspond to 4 components of the evolutionary process: repetition, survivability of failures, variation, and selection — which is to say, showing up isn’t the whole story.

It’s those last two qualities of reality-testing and adaptability that are necessary for finding the most robust strategies for success. Basically, don’t just work hard; also work smart.

So how do you work smart?  By continuing to test assumptions even — and especially — if you already have robust strategies, so that you recognize where the gaps in your knowledge are.

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