Failing Forwards

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Failing Forwards

ATTITUDE

"I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed"

- Michael Jordan

 

Competitors at the Annual Gloucester Cheese Rolling Contest are used to Failing Forwards! 

In this activity we use the metaphor to represent the importance of recognising our failures..

"Failing Forwards" accelerates your progress, wheras "Failing Backwards" halts progress, taking you in the opposite direction

This activity helps you to reframe your failures and mistakes into something positive

The Big Idea…

  • American journalist and Author, Dan Coyle argues that mistakes are information.

  • He says that anyone who becomes brilliant at something, have got better quickly because they have made a lot of mistakes.

  • Also they have paid attention to the mistakes and learnt from them.

  • We all understand that failure is important for success.

  • However people have very different attitudes towards failure.

  • What is your attitude towards failure?

What is your attitude towards failure?

Are you the type of person who hates failure?...

and perhaps feel embarrassed or humiliated when you fail at something?

Do you hide your mistakes or skip hard homework to avoid failure?

 

If this sounds like you, then you are currently "failing backwards"

You could be making much quicker progress if you can learn how to ...

1 - YOU HATE FAILURE..

What is your attitude towards failure?

Do you actively seek out difficult challenges to test yourself?

If this sounds like you, then you are probably already "failing forwards" and learning from your mistakes.

Are you able to brush off embarrassment?

2 - EMBRACE FAILURE

Are you the type of person who understands the importance of learning from your mistakes?

Failing Backwards

Failing Forwards

Blaming Others

Repeating the same mistake

Expecting never to fail

Expecting to fail continually

Accepting tradition blindly

Being limited by past mistakes

Thinking - "I'm a failure"

Withdrawing Effort

Taking Responsibility

Learning from each mistake

Knowing failure is part of the process

Maintaining a positive attitude

Challenging outdated assumptions

Taking new risks

Believing something didn't work this time only

Persevering

The following is a statement from an A Level Sport Student, whom we interviewed after her yr 13 mock exams, and asked her to describe a recent failure.
 

 

Do you think she is failing Backwards or Forwards?

 

Had a complete mental block in Paper 2 of the PE theory exam.  I forgot all my Biomechanics work and then, like always I ran out of time in the Physiology section.There’s no point to Biomechanics, I hate it. My trouble is I’m rubbish at Maths, so I won’t get a good grade in this part of the exam anyway.

Totally messed up my predicted grade now (an E) so definitely won’t get into Leeds Uni to do Sports Science, I’ll have to go through clearing. Not sure if Uni is for me anymore anyway.

Did you pick up any of the typical “failing backwards” statements, i.e.

Blaming others, Repeating the same mistake, thinking “I’m A failure”, etc

 

Do you have any suggestions for this student to “Re-Frame” her failure?

Here is a second statement that we helped her put together following her disappointing mock exam….

I am disappointed that I failed the PE exam, but these things happen. I know I didn’t revise enough, especially Biomechanics, which I have always struggled with.  I need to look at the feedback and really focus on this now. If I speak to my tutor and go over loads of past questions, I will be able to pass that section, and get through it quicker.  I am strong on Physiology but always run out of time so need to do some questions under exam conditions to practice.   Not overly concerned about the predicted grade, as long as I get a B I should still get enough UCAS points for Leeds. If not there are loads of different options for me, I should look at some other Unis and go to a couple of open days before making a decision, I could even think about taking a year out, I have loads of options!

...can you see the difference between the two ways of approaching the failure?

..And how this approach will produce much more positive results moving forward.

...in case you’re interested, this student managed to pass her A LEVEL PE with a C Grade.

She’s now  “failed forwards” all the way to America  where she is living and working as a Sports Therapist.

 

She did get to Leeds…. But not the University.

Instead she went to Leeds Beckett to study Sport and Exercise Therapy.

 

NOW OVER TO YOU...

Using a table, like the one on the next slide, think of a recent failure, e.g. recent test, essay or homework.

Describe it in a paragraph...

...have a close look at the teacher feedback you received. What areas of weaknesses do they pick out?

Make some notes, rephrasing into your own words...

 

Remember:

Adapt your thinking using the positive “failing forwards” statements, while Avoiding all the failing backwards statements.

...finish by making a simple list,

What are you going to do differently next time?

 

FINAL THOUGHTS

  • Do any of the “Failing Backwards” comments particularly resonate with you?

  • Are any of them things you say or do regularly?

  • If you had to pick one that you need to stop doing most which would it be? (Your teacher might share one of theirs...)

  • Think carefully what you might be able to say or do instead?

  • Write down your ideas, or put them in the notes on your phone.

Failing Forwards

ATTITUDE

The Big Idea…

  • American journalist and Author, Dan Coyle argues that mistakes are information.

  • He says that anyone who becomes brilliant at something, have got better quickly because they have made a lot of mistakes.

  • Also they have paid attention to the mistakes and learnt from them.

  • We all understand that failure is important for success.

  • However people have very different attitudes towards failure.

  • What is your attitude towards failure?

Failing Backwards

Failing Forwards

Blaming Others

Repeating the same mistake

Expecting never to fail

Expecting to fail continually

Accepting tradition blindly

Being limited by past mistakes

Thinking - "I'm a failure"

Withdrawing Effort

Taking Responsibility

Learning from each mistake

Knowing failure is part of the process

Maintaining a positive attitude

Challenging outdated assumptions

Taking new risks

Believing something didn't work this time only

Persevering

The following is a statement from an A Level Sport Student, whom we interviewed after her yr 13 mock exams, and asked her to describe a recent failure.
 

 

Do you think she is failing Backwards or Forwards?

 

Had a complete mental block in Paper 2 of the PE theory exam.  I forgot all my Biomechanics work and then, like always I ran out of time in the Physiology section.There’s no point to Biomechanics, I hate it. My trouble is I’m rubbish at Maths, so I won’t get a good grade in this part of the exam anyway.

Totally messed up my predicted grade now (an E) so definitely won’t get into Leeds Uni to do Sports Science, I’ll have to go through clearing. Not sure if Uni is for me anymore anyway.

Did you pick up any of the typical “failing backwards” statements, i.e.

Blaming others, Repeating the same mistake, thinking “I’m A failure”, etc

 

Do you have any suggestions for this student to “Re-Frame” her failure?

FINAL THOUGHTS

  • Do any of the “Failing Backwards” comments particularly resonate with you?

  • Are any of them things you say or do regularly?

  • If you had to pick one that you need to stop doing most which would it be? (Your teacher might share one of theirs...)

  • Think carefully what you might be able to say or do instead?

  • Write down your ideas, or put them in the notes on your phone.