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Lara Rosales

June 30, 2020

Failing is a common fear among students, but it is something we should not be afraid of. It is okay to fail and learn from your mistakes.

As students—as human beings—we tend to be afraid to fail. We feel like failing is the end of the world and we cannot afford to do so. Every class needs to be aced. Every assignment needs to be done perfectly. Every little thing we do has to go according to what is expected of us. This means there is no room for failure, so we tend to push ourselves harder every day in order to succeed. But, why is failure such a bad thing? Why are we so scared to fail a class, an assignment, or any sort of activity we face?

When we start college, most teachers tell us we must get good grades. We must do good in order to graduate and be the best professionals we can. A sense of competition builds within us and we expect to be the best of our class, the best of our major. We are pushed by society to come out on top with no failures and no regrets. We are expected to do everything the right way with no mistakes. This pushes us to deal with anxiety and stress which leads to sometimes failing even when we thought we had prepared for the challenge ahead of us.

Failure is such a strong and big word. It is a word we are afraid of. No one wants to be the family or the class failure. No one wants to see the rest succeed while they fall behind. But why? Why are we so afraid of failing? Yes, it was clearly installed in our minds by society that failing is not an option. This is not true. Failure is nothing to be afraid of. Failure is not, contrary to popular belief, the end of the world.

Throughout your college career—and generally throughout your life—you will face many moments in which you will not be able to succeed or get the results you were expecting. In other words, you will fail. This is nothing to be ashamed of. This does not mean you are worthless or not good enough. It simply means you are human. Sometimes, for reasons beyond our control, we do not excel. It can be due to anxiety, stress, or other circumstances such as a global pandemic, the loss of a loved one, a breakup, among others. Sometimes failure happens to teach us an even bigger lesson.

What you need to do when faced with failure is to see beyond that moment. Take a look at that learning experience. Why did you fail? What happened around you to lead to said failure? Do you think there are other things you could have done? How can you learn from this? How can you move forward? Failure is a small occurrence in the long college journey ahead of you. If you fail a class or an assignment, it is okay! You will have the chance to do it again with the experience from your mistakes. Do not be afraid to tell someone that you have failed; we all do at some point.

What matters in life is what you do with your errors, how you correct them. Take the necessary actions to move on from that failure with even more knowledge than before. If it was due to your mental health, take the time to heal. If it was because of a family or personal issue, take the time to deal with it. Do not rush things just because you cannot fail. Listen to your heart and follow your guts, they know best. Failure is simply a part of life that we cannot avoid. Do not be so scared to face it; just remember it is one small step in the ladder to success.

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