Leadership Lessons from Failures

This is the first post in our new blog series about lessons learned from failures. Over the next couple months we will have guest posts every week from some truly impressive people who will share their insights with our readers. Please come back every Friday and follow the series. The first post comes to us from Brianda Garcia.

People don’t usually boast about their failures. But failures cannot be ignored nor easily forgotten. Even though the word “failure” has a negative connotation to people, one always has the opportunity to learn from a failure and come out with new life lessons. These lessons prevent similar failures from happening in the future.

I have experienced a lot of failures in my short 21 years of life. Although it may seem that I have not learned much from life yet and that I still have not encountered a true failure, I would argue that failures are inevitable no matter your age. Every year we experience hundreds of failures.

One of my most intense failures happened when I was in high school. It was a time when I rejected one of my best friends, as backlash from some fighting with other close friends. Claudia had nothing to do with the battle I was having with other friends and was in fact only trying to calm the tension between everyone. I, however, ended up taking all my frustrations out on her. Since I was hurting, I hurt her. She did not deserve to have been downgraded to lower friend status by me just because the relationships with my other friends were strained.

I see now that the way I treated Claudia really was a huge failure for me. I always took my friendships very seriously and was ashamed and felt guilty for having treated her the way I did when she had done nothing wrong. With this instance, I did not meet the standards of what a good friend is supposed to be. As time passed, I realized what a mistake I had made and I am happy to report that she and I were able to patch things up and we are still close friends. I realized that it is better to talk about what I have going on rather than holding it all in and exploding at some random point. The life lesson learned here is to remain calm in situations and to not take frustrations out on innocent people. When I am hurting, I need to get myself better. I need to allow the people close to me to help. Tearing others down is not a solution.

Failures are unavoidable. We will make mistakes. The key is that we learn from them. I am not worried about the mistakes I will make in the future. I am actually excited about them. I look forward to seeing how I will respond, what I will learn, and how I will grow.


Brianda is a student at St. Edward’s University. She is 21-years-old and is planning to graduate early this December. She has been keeping busy this semester with her part-time job at the Office of the Registrar at St. Ed’s and with her internship at SOS Leadership. She is staying strong as she endures her last couple of months in college, but is eager to take on the real world after graduating.

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