If there’s one thing an entrepreneur knows well it’s failure. To be honest it’s an inevitability that comes with choosing to build a unique, soul-purposed business. You’re charting new territory and a lot of the time, making it up as you go along. For the first two years of any business, you’ll spend a huge chunk of time just testing what works and what doesn’t.

This experimentation stage is what helps you build and grow your business. Nobody comes straight out the gate with everything figured out. Even if a business appears to have been successful from the get-go, looking in from the outside you have no idea how many failed launches, terrible straplines or awful looking websites the owner went through before they finally settled on the finished version.

Try, fail and try again

I had the idea for The Self-Care Emporium in 2019 while I was living and working in New Zealand. I was thousands of miles away from home, barely knew anybody and preparing to return to the UK with no idea of what I wanted to do, other than knowing I didn’t want to work for someone else.

Since then, I’ve been through countless branding iterations, started to create multiple products and courses that never made it to the light of day. I’ve tried handmaking products to sell, importing products, offering coaching then deciding against it and taking it off my website. I’ve tried various different social media strategies and techniques that have failed miserably and paid for advertising that flopped and lost me money. With all those fails though, I learned how to improve. I learned what does work, what’s worth my time, what is worth investing in. Even now I’m still learning and I hope I continue to, no matter how old my business gets.

Failure leads to growth

The sting of failure only lasts for a moment and how you deal with it depends on your own perspective on what it means to fail. Often, it’s simply the embarrassment of failing that keeps us from taking risks, we don’t want others to know that we’ve failed.

That is especially true for entrepreneurs. Our businesses are our babies and we don’t want to prove the haters or non-believers right. We don’t want to show that we couldn’t make it work. So how can we get around that? We keep going, we keep moving forward, learning from our mistakes, understanding why our failures happened and how we can prevent them from happening again. Nothing makes bitter people angrier than when you refuse to give up and don’t allow your setbacks to stop you from achieving amazing things.

I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.

— Thomas A. Edison

Think about your own failures in life and work, how have you moved past them? Was the fear of failure worse than the actual failure itself? We can often resort to chaos thinking when taking a risk and it makes things seem like the end of the world even when it’s not, so when you’re worrying about failing, try and think about what the worst outcome could be and be realistic about it. You’ll usually realise that even if things go wrong, there are multiple ways you can rectify your situation or recover from whatever failure comes your way.