Danica Patrick: How failure can be a gift

July 18, 2016 | by Danica Patrick

If you know anything about me, you know I do NOT like to lose.

I also don’t like to give up. Maybe I’m stubborn, but that trait has helped me stay tough in the face of failure.

Nobody likes to fail. It’s not a ton of fun.

Failing is a let-down, especially when you’ve worked really hard on something. But there is a silver lining.

When you fail, you have a choice. Walk away angry or frustrated, or turn it into an experience that makes you better.

I’ve changed the way I look at failure. It’s a teaching tool. It makes me better and smarter. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, right?

It’s frustrating when you don’t succeed at something. But I’m going to bet that most of the time someone who has succeeded has failed a lot, too. What matters is whether you can get back out there and find a way to dig deeper.

Nobody succeeds 100 percent of the time. Everyone fails. The difference is how you handle it.

Failure’s a great teacher, no doubt. The only thing that makes failure really awful is if you quit and walk away.

Cooking has involved a lot of trial and error for me. The result? I’m a lot better in the kitchen now than when I first started learning.

This winter I’m going to tackle baking! There may be some flopped soufflés, but so what? If I make a mistake, at least I’ll know what not to do next time.

Trying new things that I could potentially fail at has also taught me patience. Nothing happens overnight. Most things require a lot of practice (*ahem* yoga) to see results.

It has also taught me not to take myself too seriously. If you can laugh at your missteps, it’s a lot easier to pick yourself up and start again.

Life is a journey. Enjoy the process.

Photo Credit: HHP/HAROLD HINSON

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