The Art of Failing Successfully

The psychologist David Nussbaum has shown that whether we tend to learn from mistakes or brush them aside, the response is rooted in repairing our self-esteem. Failure is never fun, but success requires that we learn to fight through our frustration and find the upside of error.

People with a fixed mindset tend to see failures as a negative those with a growth mindset see mistakes as an essential part of the learning process. If you want to learn more about fostering a growth mindset, read Carol Dweck's book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success.

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Jonah Lehrer is the author of How We Decide and Proust Was a Neuroscientist.