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How to Use Failure as a Stepping Stone to Success

How to Use Failure as a Stepping Stone to Success

Kent Yoshimura -

Failure is an inevitable part of life. Whether you’re an entrepreneur, an athlete, or a student, you’re bound to experience setbacks and disappointments at some point in your journey. While failure can be disheartening, it can also be a valuable opportunity to learn, grow, and improve. In fact, many successful people credit their failures as the driving force behind their success.

The key to using failure as a stepping stone to success lies in how you respond to it. By shifting your perspective on failure, you can turn setbacks into opportunities, build resilience, and ultimately achieve greater things than you ever thought possible. In this article, we’ll explore some practical tips and strategies that will help you use failure as a catalyst for growth and success. We will also learn about Kent Yoshimura's (CEO and co-founder of Neuro) experience and perspective on the topic.


 Using Failure as a Stepping Stone to Success

Failure is a natural part of the journey towards success. It is inevitable that we will experience setbacks, mistakes, and disappointments on our path to achieving our goals. However, it is important to remember that failure can be used as a stepping stone to success if we approach it with the right mindset and attitude.

1. Embrace Failure

The first step in using failure as a stepping stone to success is to embrace it. Instead of avoiding failure or fearing its consequences, see it as a natural part of the learning process. Embracing failure means accepting that mistakes will happen, and that they are opportunities to learn and grow.

To embrace failure, start by changing your mindset. Instead of viewing failure as a personal flaw or weakness, see it as a necessary step on the path to success. When you make a mistake, don’t beat yourself up about it. Instead, reflect on what went wrong and how you can do better next time.

2. Learn from Your Mistakes

The next step in using failure as a stepping stone to success is to learn from your mistakes. Failure is only a setback if you don’t take the time to reflect on what went wrong and how you can improve.

When you experience a failure or setback, take some time to reflect on what happened. What were the contributing factors? What could you have done differently? What did you learn from the experience? By asking yourself these questions, you can turn a negative experience into a positive learning opportunity.

3. Practice Resilience

Resilience is the ability to bounce back from setbacks and keep moving forward. It’s a crucial trait for anyone who wants to use failure as a stepping stone to success. Resilience isn’t something you’re born with – it’s a skill that can be developed through practice.

To build resilience, start by setting realistic expectations for yourself. Don’t expect everything to go perfectly all the time. Instead, anticipate setbacks and be prepared to deal with them. When you experience a setback, don’t give up. Instead, focus on what you can control and take steps to move forward.

4. Emphasize Growth Over Perfection

Perfectionism can be a major obstacle to using failure as a stepping stone to success. When you strive for perfection, you set yourself up for disappointment and frustration. Instead of focusing on being perfect, emphasize growth and improvement.

To emphasize growth over perfection, set realistic goals for yourself. Break your larger goals down into smaller, more manageable steps. Celebrate your progress along the way, even if you haven’t achieved your ultimate goal yet. Remember that success is a journey, not a destination.

5. Take Calculated Risks

Taking risks is a necessary part of achieving success. However, not all risks are created equal. To use failure as a stepping stone to success, it’s important to take calculated risks.

A calculated risk is a risk that you take after carefully considering the potential outcomes and weighing the pros and cons. It’s not a blind leap of faith – it’s a strategic decision that’s based on sound reasoning. When you take calculated risks, you’re more likely to succeed, even if you experience setbacks along the way.

6. Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help

No one achieves success on their own. If you want to use failure as a stepping stone to success, you need to be willing to ask for help when you need it. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness – it’s a sign of strength.

When you’re facing a setback or challenge, don’t be afraid to reach out to others for support. This could be a mentor, a friend, a family member, or a professional. They may have valuable insights or perspectives that can help you overcome your obstacles and achieve your goals.


Kent Yoshimura's perspective on the fear of failure

Kent Yoshimura is an entrepreneur and co-founder of NeuroGum, a company that produces functional chewing gum to help people improve their focus, clarity, and energy. Kent co-founded NeuroGum with his friend and business partner, Ryan Chen. The idea was born out of their desire to create a product that could help people achieve their goals and be their best selves. Today, NeuroGum is a successful business that has gained a loyal following of customers who appreciate the benefits of the product.

During the building of the company, Kent encountered many potential failures that didn't stop him from achieving the expected success. With his positive mindset on failure, he and his business partner endured the difficulty and accomplished their goals. In a brief interview, Kent gave encouraging words towards working against fear and changing our perspectives and mindset on failure.

I think a lot of people think failure is always bad - when that’s obviously not the case. So many great people have failed and failed time again, and since we’re only accustomed to seeing only their accomplishments, we don’t recognize that failure is part of the bigger process. 

Perseverance is a quality that I would place alongside failure. When we started our business, we never imagined failure as an option, even if certain things from a traditional business perspective may have made it seem that way. Whether it wasn’t securing a warehouse so we had to ship product from our place, or selling out of product and having angry customers call my personal cell phone line (which was the CS line at the time), we assessed the situation, persevered, and just continued to adapt and grow.

If you embrace growth, you can reframe every situation. Failure, as a word, is so deeply negative that we tend to ignore the positive outcomes that can come out of it. Just don’t keep repeating the same mistakes, and failure will never even be a thing. Set your ego aside and go take on the world!



In conclusion, failure is not something to be feared or avoided, but rather an opportunity for growth and development. The most successful people in the world have experienced setbacks and failures, but what sets them apart is their ability to learn from those experiences and use them as stepping stones to success.

To use failure as a stepping stone to success, you must first embrace it and see it as a natural part of the learning process. You must learn from your mistakes and use them as opportunities to grow and improve. Building resilience, emphasizing growth over perfection, taking calculated risks, and asking for help when you need it are all important strategies to help you overcome setbacks and achieve your goals.

One of the most important things to remember is that failure is not the end of the road, but rather a learning opportunity. When we fail, we have the chance to reflect on what went wrong and how we can do things differently next time. This can help us to develop new strategies, skills, and perspectives that will be valuable as we continue to pursue our goals.

However, it’s important to remember that using failure as a stepping stone to success is not a one-time process. It’s a continuous journey that requires ongoing effort and dedication. It’s about constantly learning, growing, and evolving to become the best version of yourself.

So, the next time you experience a setback or failure, remember that it’s not the end of the road. It’s an opportunity to learn, grow, and ultimately achieve greater things than you ever thought possible. With the right mindset and strategies, you can turn failure into success and achieve your full potential. For more information about the fear of failure, read our article Strategies and Tips for Overcoming the Fear of Failure.


About the Author

Angelica Castillo is a communications student in the mornings, an actress in the afternoons, and a passionate diary writer by night.

She is the creative copywriter at Magnify Media Agency and is currently working on audiovisual projects. She is also interested in psychology, constantly informing herself about human conduct and looking for ways to improve mental health to help others live a fulfilling life.

Find her on Instagram here: @aange.cas


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