If at first you don’t succeed …

Posted 05.17.2008

Try_again_2 One of my favorite coaching quotes comes from Aristotle (OK, I’m skewing way old here): “We are what we repeatedly do, excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” So, a little over 2,000 years later, it looks like he’s still right!

In The Wall Street Journal, Melinda Beck reports on what psychologists are learning about success and performance. Turns out that the key to success is what the pros call self-efficacy – the belief in one’s capacity to succeed in spite of repeated failed attempts.

A notable example is Thomas Edison who took 1,000 tries before finally inventing the light bulb. He told a reporter that he didn’t fail 1,000 times. He said that the light bulb was an invention with 1,000 steps.

So, how do you hang in there after repeatedly falling off the beam? Melinda’s article offers some good advice. Check it out.