I am often curious as to what sometimes keeps people from seeking help for anger control. Is it the cost? Is it the apprehension of the investment of time and energy? Maybe it’s the concern of not knowing what are the steps to gain victory in this area of their lives. The more I have thought about it the more I have come to realize that I think more than anything I think individuals with anger problems don’t seek help for the simple reason that keeps people from tackling most challenges in their lives- fear of failure. Fear of failure is one of the most restricting phobias we can have. Many remember the famous movie “Apollo 13” which chronicled the challenging (and nearly disastrous) flight of Apollo 13 and the tremendous efforts of both the astronauts’ and ground crew as they tackled what seemed like insurmountable problems. At one point the quote is spoken in the film “failure is not an option”. It was this “take no prisoners” focus that many have credited with the extraordinary success of that mission.
If we really think about it though, failure IS an option and it is often a very underestimated one. Being afraid of failure limits our capacity to take risks, to try new things and to learn from our mistakes (which anger individuals are will acquainted with). If we reflect on our youth we tend to grow up with the perception failing was a bad thing and we avoided it. If we study the lives of successful people though, we find that type of thinking is inherently dangerous and would have prevented them from achieving their great successes. The thoughts of avoiding failure end up actually holding us BACK form
As we grow as individuals we need to realize that failing is just as important as succeeding. When we try new things it increases our chances of failure. The only way to grow is by trying new things and to “step out of our comfort zone”. I really believe Albert Einstein hit the nail on the head when he said “ a person who says he has never made a mistake has never tried anything new!”
Here are some thoughtful famous quotes from very successful people on the topic of failure…
“Success means going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.” Winston Churchill
“A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.” George Bernard Shaw
“Would you like me to give you a formula for success? It’s quite simple, really. Double your rate of failure.” Thomas Watson
“Failure doesn’t mean that you’re a failure, it just means that you haven’t succeeded yet.” Robert Schuller
“Failure should be our teacher, not our undertaker. Failure is a delay, not a defeat. It is a temporary detour, not a dead end. Failure is something we can only avoid by saying nothing, doing nothing and being nothing.” Denis Waitley
Let me encourage you today if you are struggling with anger issues and living in a life of destructive behavior, to not be afraid of failure. I challenge you to seek out the tools and techniques to achieve success in managing your anger. Don’t reflect on past failure attempts but, instead, be drawn forward by a compelling set of goals that get your heart racing and your spirit soaring.
Failure is an option. And it’s an inevitability for anyone who’s doing anything worthwhile.
Manage Your Anger, Don’t Let Your Anger Manage You!
Rick Bauer, C.A.R.T.
Certified Anger Resolution Therapist @ The Center for Personal & Relationship Growth