The Phoenix is a mythical bird from times of Ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome that is known for its fiery rebirth from the ashes of its own creative forces.
There is another holy bird, called the Phoenix, which I have never seen but in pictures. He rarely appears in Egypt — only once in every 500 years, so they say, in Heliopolis — and he is supposed to come when his father dies. If the painter describes him truly, his plumage is part golden and part red, and he is very like an eagle in shape and size. They say that this bird comes from Arabia, bringing the body of his father embalmed in myrrh to the temple of the sun, and there he buries him. First he molds an egg of myrrh; then he puts his father in the middle of it. Lastly, he covers up the body with myrrh. This is what they say this bird does. But I do not believe them.– Herodotus
This mystical symbol of life death and rebirth is a reminder that when we reach the bottom of any situation in our lives, we are essentially at the beginning of a brand new opportunity – IF we can learn how to rise from the ashes.
From the description of Herodotus, we can look at the father being our way of operating that needs to be reexamined. When we bury our past ideas of our self, we can really up-level ourselves in business and in life. Myrrh, is usually representative of the Lacrimosa, or sorrow, of life. Knowing that only by going through a dark and uncertain point in life can we be lead to our regeneration, the hatching of a new phase of existence. Allowing what occurs naturally to follow, since after every night the sun returns.
If you’ve been in business for any length of time, you’ve likely already experienced a number of setbacks, hold-ups, dead ends, and failures. A role in leadership is navigated by the ability to face challenges willingly and come up with creative solutions.
Having relaunched my website and am now recompiling my work in a new presentation, I will share how I have learned to look at my failures as landmarks of my success.
Watch your self talk
The question really isn’t whether you’ve experienced issues with starting, growing and/or scaling your business – it’s how you got over it. I find this especially when you are evaluating your actions and your next course of action.
We are in business to solve problems, not embellish them. Watching how we speak to ourselves and others is the first step to re-framing our comebacks and rising from the ashes of entrepreneurial failure.
The Phoenix is self-generating, much like our words, which are spontaneous expressions of our mindset. Our creative force is in constant shift, when we consciously take the time to cultivate our internal self-talk with care we can sift through the lessons and the actual grunt work that will take us to our next phase of development.
We may be confusing a good lesson in what to do next time, for self-doubt and hesitation. If at the brink of our creative process we tend to fizzle out, we should learn to watch and observe our self talk.
Working with a coach, finding a mastermind or taking an active role in what you mentally ingest are ways to make sure you are nurturing healthy self-talk.
Survey the ashes
Everything is connected. Energy cannot be destroyed, and anything that is cannot never not be – without never having existed at all in the first place.
So when we lift our heads and are looking at our direction in business with clarity and the eye of wisdom, having learned what we learned by going through what we’ve experienced, we must realize that opportunity has always existed and is within our grasps.
Sometimes our biggest blunders are here to teach us our greatest lessons. When we are totally honest with ourselves, we are usually glad that things happen the way they do. Especially if we are in a mindset of constant self-improvement, because we know that we would rather be authentically successful, rather then just getting by on lucky breaks, or over sights.
When someone seriously transitions their life into a full-time business owner or entrepreneur, they tend to make the same amount of money they are used. When you are accustomed to making a certain amount of money, you bring those same expectations into your next money making activity. So often times, when we want to see how our lives are put together we have to let some parts of it to fall away, revealing where we are making decisions unconsciously.
With the right mindset you never really lose anything in life, and business is no exception. When you look at any failure as a lesson in up-leveling yourself and your business, you are given a valuable resource in the ashes of entrepreneurial failure.
As an entrepreneur, we get to know ourselves in new ways by communicating our message. As we change, our business and message changes with us. We may struggle in the beginning to align our intentions and branded message. This is often where we face most of our failures – in identifying ourselves and our unique brand.
Like a telescope looking far into the distance of otherworldly possibilities, we have to cultivate the patience to focus our attention and energy on the correct target.
A key question to ask yourself is: What separates me from my competition? Knowing what makes you unique is a great motivator when facing failure. Often times we are confused about what makes our business stand out and inspired us in the first place.
It’s not uncommon, sometimes even necessary and often far more interesting if we invent a place in the world for ourselves that synthesizes our best assets.
Through our business and message, we craft an image that we present in life, and this is where real entrepreneurs seek to be authentic. We get to claim our position in life and from this creative vantage point, we have the privilege to reframe our success and failures in our own way.
If you haven’t heard it yet, failure is actually good for entrepreneurship and is necessary for learning in general. When we are children we are actually encouraged to fail, in order to see the error of our ways and to consciously correct ourselves. T
“Fail faster” is an entrepreneurial philosophy that encourages you to make mistakes and quickly implement changes in your business trajectory. The goal is to maintain a strategy of constant self-evaluation. Instead of self-criticism, self-evaluation encourages you to seek out areas of improvement and seeing where you could make changes in the future.
As creatures, we focus on communication as our main means of survival, since we’ve long abandoned the spear and shield, for the pen and paper. Clearly articulating ourselves is just as important to our wellbeing as learning to outrun a leopard was to primitive man. Although
Learning to manage yourself under pressure is also something that comes with a “fail faster” mindset. With the idea that you are on a bigger mission, to extract valuable learning lessons from your experiences, you no longer take things too personally. You allow your business life to be separate from your personal and you know that each is an aspect of your whole and complete self.
Transformation is the art of adapting to our environment and situation. The ability to heal ourselves from the lows of life and recreate ourselves in a new and better way is the power that the Phoenix represents. It is both something we learn and something that we can get better at. Failure is inevitable in any field of life, but how we respond to them deterimines how it will impact us in the long run.
Often times those that are the most successful fail the most. They have only learned how to turn their failures into opportunities for growth and a reminder of how important their goals are to them.
How have you learned to handle failure in your business? Leave a comment below, and thank you for reading.