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Failure: Character Flaw Or Character Development? 

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at DESU chapter.

Sometimes, life can throw a series of curve balls and obstacles in one’s path. One of the biggest obstacles I’ve faced in life is failure and understanding how to overcome it. While failure is something many have experienced, the feeling of failure makes it unique for many who encounter it. 

The feeling of exclusivity that comes with the territory of failure is interesting, considering it’s a natural and mandatory feature of life. It’s easy to take the feeling of failure personally and view it as a character flaw. The term failure can be used as a way to depict someone’s shortcomings as a factor of their personality.

Recently, I’ve come to challenge the connotation of the term failure. Instead of viewing failure as a sign of inadequacy, I’ve come to view it as a sign of strength. Failing a task insinuates it has been attempted. 

Attempting to accomplish a big or small task displays excellent strength. Although I view failure in a new light, I have not always been accepting of this typical trait of life. 

Before this new approach, I viewed failure as a reason not to try something new. Whether this meant missing out on opportunities or even starting a new hobby, I felt that I had to instantly master whatever I put my mind to in order to continue with the task.

If I didn’t master this new skill instantly or get accepted for this opportunity, I felt it was a sign to stop all attempts at working towards this goal. This was a shield that I developed in order to protect myself from experiencing further disappointment. 

However, I realized what I believed to be rational thinking hindered me from becoming my best version of me. 

Shying away from failure will not bring an end to this inevitable occurrence. This will only breed the belief that nothing is worth trying if success isn’t promised. I know that people tend to market failure as a stepping stone by reminding us of successful members of society who have experienced loss. 

Although this is a great incentive, it can be challenging to use this as inspiration since our success has yet to be promised. In order to truly overcome failure, I believe the key is to understand that life may not unfold as planned. 

Embracing failure is embracing the fact that what many deem a shortcoming may be a stepping stone. I’ve learned to embrace failure, not by promising myself a perfect ending but by telling myself that regardless of where my life ends, I know I’ve given it my all. 

That’s all failure really is: giving it your all and then being redirected to the path meant for you. If life doesn’t turn out as planned, that isn’t a sign of failure but courage. Your success story may not turn out like the ones seen before, but that’s alright. This is your story, and it’s worth telling. 

Anaya Balkcom is a current sophomore attending Delaware State University, and pursuing a degree in Mass Communications with a concentration in Convergence Journalism. Prior to attending Delaware State University, Anaya graduated from The Ursuline High School where she was a member of the Female Empowering Voices Program. During this time Anaya was selected to represent her school in a CBS news special on the topic of New Rochelle Students inspired by Vice President Kamala Harris. It was at this time Anaya discovered her true passion found in the area of Mass Communications. From there, in Anaya’s senior year of high school, she explored different avenues in Mass Communication through an internship BronxNet Open 2.0 with BronxNet TV Station. During this internship Anaya created, hosted, edited, and programmed feature segments. Through this she gained exposure to the world of television and film. Upon entry into DSU, Anaya became a member of the campus radio station and composed articles for the campus newspaper. You can also find Anaya’s latest work in the media on Spotify, under the podcast titled “All in With Anaya Morgan.”