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Musings on Failure from a Life Coach

Coaching can help get a different perspective on the situation, analyze from unusual angles, and get a new action plan.

Anastasia Frolova
Musings on Failure from a Life Coach

The topic of failure

Recently at work, I was asked to give a talk on the topic of failures.

Not that I keep failing all the time… or do I?


I find this very interesting: initially, I struggled to find a topic, and then of course several situations came to mind (yes, I do fail at times), but I also realized that I do not perceive those situations as failures anymore. I perceive those as some of the best things that could have happened to me that led to possibly the best outcomes that I could not foresee at that time.

Yes, I remember how I felt at that moment, and now I know what happened after. Remembering those learnings can really help to get through those tough emotional moments and get to see different perspectives faster and easier. And yes, that’s also where coaching can help get a different perspective on the situation, analyze from unusual angles, and get a new action plan that would consider all those findings.


So, I would like to share some of my learnings here too:

  • Learning 1: experience cannot be negative! Experience is just an experience, and it all goes into your knowledge bucket. It might be unpleasant, unwanted, or undesired, but if we look at it from the angle of what worked, what didn’t, and what can be done differently that can lead to very interesting findings.
  • Learning 2: we don’t know what we don’t know! What seems to be the end of the world might be just the beginning of something even more exciting.

  • Learning 3: running towards something works better than just running away from something.

  • Learning 4: when running from point A to point B, knowing what your point B is really helps.

And guess what, here comes coaching again! All those topics are perfect for a discussion in a coaching session and getting to specific outcomes as a result.


What is important to you? 

Funnily enough, this article from NLI popped up in my LinkedIn news feed this week. It talks about a kind of common mistake and options to cope with or mitigate the impact which I find quite good.

Today I wanted to share one of my “failures” and how it can be seen as a success at the end. For some reason when I hear “failure,” I immediately think about job search: yes, I had two very lengthy job search episodes in my career.

Let me tell you the story: once during one of those episodes I applied to a big company for a fairly interesting role, and got through several rounds of interviews. I had a feeling that the last one was not really a blast, and probably that was a mutual impression. So, a day later the recruiter called me and shared the news that I did not get it and also shared the feedback that I am an introvert, and this is not really the right profile for the company. Bingo! 

Well, I am a horrible introvert, that is true, but that does not mean that introverts cannot work well.

Reflecting on that: even if I would fake it and try to show up as an extrovert – that wouldn’t be me, and I would never be happy and thriving in such an environment where I must pretend all day long. So, we can look at it as a “win”, as probably it saved me a burn-out, and potentially another episode of my job search.

And yes, I still believe that being yourself is important and what I learned from this experience was how important the environment can be.

And a coaching question from this experience: What is important for you?


Learning from failure

So let me tell you about the event that triggered me to write about failures. At work one of our EROs collaborated with the company F**kup Nights. The mission of the company and the idea of the events is to embrace transparency, remove stigma from failures, and improve productivity by creating safer work environments. I can relate to this mission, as I believe that the more “human” we are at work the better results we can bring together. This all correlates with my coaching values very well too.

So, my failure story for the event was the one that actually became a trigger for the job search that in the end brought me to London.

As we can observe now, it was some sort of luck to get that trigger, as it continues to bring positive things to my life, even 7-8 years after! Now I have a story to tell that might help other people and bring very interesting collaborations and connections to my life.

That is to the point that we don’t know what we don’t know, and we don’t know what’s behind the corner until we go and check. Yes, that is often not about comfort, but more about curiosity, exploration, reflection, and learning. And that brings growth, doesn’t it?

And also, about introverts: we actually can be pretty good presenters - and we’re humble ;) 

It is, in fact, easier to present for an audience than it is to interrupt the round table discussion. Introverts can enjoy being among people, just for a limited amount of time :)

Editado por

Raquel Rojas

Musings on Failure from a Life Coach
Anastasia Frolova
Certified Coach
People leader, coach, and mentor. Passionate about bringing value to people, teams, customers, and partners via technical solutions, mentoring, and coaching. Helping to be authentic in problem-solving, finding solutions, and navigating the paths. Learn more at


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