Four Mistakes that Sabotage Success

Rod Pickett
2 min readMay 23, 2022

This is the feedback loop behind all human behavior: try, fail, learn, try differently.

James Clear, Atomic Habits

Slow, steady growth over time produces some incredible results.

Unfortunately, many people make one or more of the following four mistakes and see little or no progress.

Many never try anything outside their comfort zone.

This process only works if we explore beyond where we feel comfortable.

Personal growth requires risk.

If we are not trying new things, we are not growing.

If we are not growing, we are declining.

With a growth mindset, not only do we grow but so does our comfort zone.

Many never take chances that create the opportunity for failure.

If failure is not an option, then growth is not an option either.

The ideal failure is a small setback that can be recovered from rather easily. However, big failures sometimes produce the opportunity for significant innovation.

We need to reframe the whole concept of failure.

Failure is a necessary step in the process of growth. It is not a reason for embarrassment.

Many don’t learn from their failures and have to repeat the lesson.

This may be the most tragic mistake.

If we courageously try something new and bravely endure failure — but if we don’t take the time and effort to learn from the failure, then we will eventually make the same mistake again.

Often, we don’t want to admit that we failed in some way, so we move on quickly without asking, “What can I learn from this?”

If we’ve already paid the tuition, then we might as well complete the lesson.

Because our formal education has trained us to find the one correct answer, we stop looking for answers once we have a reasonable one.

But we can often learn multiple lessons from a single “failure.”

Many never try again or foolishly try the same thing in the same way.

It is tempting to get discouraged at this point.

But, if we have successfully reframed failure as an opportunity rather than a cause of embarrassment, then we can test our conclusions about what to do differently.

And we then start the whole process once more.

We must remember that success is not a destination but a journey.

It’s important that we take pleasure in the journey and enjoy every small step toward becoming the person we are destined to be.

— Rod Pickett

Now available at Amazon: The Courageous Heart: Wisdom for Difficult Times in paperback and eBook.

Rod Pickett

Rod Pickett is a writer, pastor, teacher, photographer, real estate broker, certified personal trainer, consultant, woodworker, and life-long learner.