We don't like to make mistakes. It doesn't feel good to misstep. We don't set out to encounter setbacks. We'd rather not fail. In every activity we do, we strive for quality, timeliness, and value. We want our work to be a reflection of our character, to represent us well, to be held in esteem by others. Success seems like a reasonable goal — and it is, most of the time, but not always. When setbacks occur we welcome them because we recognize they are necessary for personal growth.
If we always win, always achieve our goals, always receive the best marks on our reviews ... we don't learn to grow. If we feel our success is predetermined, our mindset becomes fixed. When encountering a setback, a fixed mindset defers responsibility to an outward cause, or even worse, simply moves on, destined to repeat the same pattern.
To grow we cultivate a reflective mindset, looking inward for the cause of our failure, then we formulate a plan to address the opportunity. This mindset positions us to be learning-oriented, receptive to what we can do about that which we have identified. It is solution focused, not blame focused. Our personal development is accelerated through the reflective analysis of a setback.
On the whole we desire success, yet while we strive to complete each task on time and with quality, we understand that any setbacks we encounter are opportunities for improvement — as long as our reflective mindset is in place.
See the whole series by using the Paradox Pairs Index