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What Successful People Know About Failure

That Unsuccessful People Don't

Successful people can take something that looks like a failure and turn it into a stepping stone, or even a success. Harvard psychologist Ellen Langer uses the example of a company that invested millions of dollars to invest in a glue which turned out to be non-adhesive. At first, Langer pointed out, the development was thought to have turned out to be a disaster. What use could there possibly be for a non-adhesive glue? In fact, it was out of this failure that the post-it notes were developed, Langer continued.

Ellen Langer is an advocate for keeping the mind young, fresh and agile through the practice of “noticing new things,” or, “mindfulness.” Langer doesn’t use mindfulness in spiritual terms, but to describe a state of mind that is as free of pre-conceptions as possible. Look at your failures and see if you can’t turn them into opportunities.

Samar Habib is a writer, researcher and scholar who lives in California. When she’s not busy figuring out how things work and how they could be working better, you’ll find her sharing what she’s learned. A prolific researcher and writer, she also teaches the online course Quantum Mind: Stop Suffering and Take Back Your Life. You can get in touch with her on drsamarhabib [at] email [dot] com

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