How to Use Smart Failure and Learn Faster

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Recently, I watched a TED Talk from Eddie Obeng on YouTube. Eddie talks about Smart Failure, and how everything we know is wrong. I have days like that, but little did I realize everything I knew was wrong. All our assumptions are based on the past, which has already changed, says Eddie Obeng.

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Someone Has Changed the Rules

Our world doesn’t work the same way we think it does. It has changed. Our entire existence is based on a world that no longer exists, and all the rules have changed. Do you believe this? I sure do. This one idea changes how we react to everything. He goes on to say that size and scale are no longer the same. If you’re sitting at your little desk under the stairs (reminds me of Harry Potter!), you’re now connected to the internet. By the way, if you get that reference to being under the stairs, you might like this article: Quick and Easy Guide to Your Harry Potter Social Media Type.

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Global is the New Scale

Every time you tweet, one-third of your followers are in different countries, says Eddie Obeng. That seems true, although I’m sure I tweet to people who, like me, speak English. How about you? Do you have a lot of diversity in the people you talk to? You can use Tweepsmap to discover where your followers are (on Twitter, anyway). It’s very cool that you can sit at your desktop, or use your phone, to connect to people all over the world. And being connected to people from all over can make you stop and rethink your assumptions.

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Smart Failure and Yoga

My yoga instructor at Ease Mountain Yoga talks about falling up. It’s an excellent example of changing the way we think through a physical challenge. We all try to fall up as we do our tree poses. We still fall over, but it feels different. There is lots of giggling, which doesn’t happen as much as when we fall down, for one thing. A small reframing of how we do something can sometimes create a big change in our so-called failure.

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Creativity and Innovation

In the old-world model, you tried to do something new, and you failed, and got canned. In the new world model, you fail and are rewarded for it. Not always, but often. This is one way companies, especially startups, are trying to drive innovation. Where do you fall on the spectrum? You might like this article: What Happens When You Focus on Failure and Creativity?

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The Idea That Inspired This Blog Post

The blog post you’re reading is based on this TED Talk from Eddie Obeng. Find him on WorldAfterMidnight. You can also listen to his TED Talk. It’s just 12 minutes long, and so worth it. Your little gray cells will thank you.




    Great post. I truly like the post. Failure in life teach us many things and provide us new things to learn. We learn several things from our failure that helps to perform things in a better way. After-all a failure can be a good start and a beginning.

    Life is not about about what happens to you but life is about how you react to what happens to you.

    Really helpful post and thanks for sharing.

    • Hi Aadarsh,

      Thanks so much for commenting about failure. I often learn more from failure than from success. Sometimes a failure means that I’m stretching beyond what’s comfortable, so it’s really a big thumbs up from the universe.

      Have a great day!

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