Staring at a Week of Failure

Spin it any way you want, re-frame it as a learning opportunity or a period of growth, I failed hard this week at so many things. From missing a speaking engagement to firing a client to massive communication failures to not getting paid, I took a beating this week, and a lot of it comes from not having sufficiently separated myself from behaviors in the past that no longer serve me.

There is no one to blame but myself. I would love to blame the clients who didn’t communicate, the clients who ignored my instructions, the clients who didn’t pay me and the clients who don’t respect the value of my time, but the reality is that I am the only person who can set the boundaries for those things, and my lack of boundaries contributed to the failure I found myself in this week.

I would love to blame other people for communication failures and the damage that has done to the relationships, but again, I’m part of that, and there is a lot I didn’t do. I was passive when I needed to set and enforce boundaries, and the only person who gets to determine my value is me.

I don’t feel bad about myself, I’m not beating myself up, I’m not in a shame storm of self-loathing, but I think it’s valuable here to just own that I contributed to the pile of failures that was my week, be honest about those contributions, and do things differently moving forward. Maybe very differently, I’m still wading through what I do next and what my next steps are to address those behaviors that are still clinging to my heels.

Pain can be debilitating, and I have been there. It can also be motivating, and the difference for me this time, I think, is that these failures are coming after I have spent a lot of time and effort learning to love myself. It’s made a noticeable difference, and has allowed me to face failures without shame, which means I can do something about them rather than be caught in them, unable to escape.

gray scale photo of a woman about to climb the fire escape ladder
Photo by Vinicius Altava on

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