John Maxwell’s leadership blog features key tactics to learn from our mistakes and improve during future endeavors

If you’re going to lose—and you are because everyone does—then why not turn it into a gain? How do you do that? By learning from it. A loss isn’t totally a loss if you learn something as a result of it. Your losses can come to define you if you let them. If you stay where a loss leaves you, then eventually you can get stuck there. But you can choose to change, grow, and learn from your losses.   A loss doesn’t turn into a lesson unless we work hard to make it so. Losing gives us an opportunity to learn, but many people do not seize it. And when they don’t, losing really hurts.

Learning is not easy during down times, because it requires us to do things that are not natural. It is hard to smile when we are not happy. It is difficult to respond positively when numb with defeat. It takes discipline to do the right thing when everything is going wrong.   If that is your desire—to become a learner from losses—you need to change the way you look at losses, cultivate qualities that help you respond to them, and develop the ability to learn from them. I believe you can do that using this road map:

1. Cultivate Humility: The Spirit of Learning
2. Face Reality: The Foundation of Learning
3. Accept Responsibility: The First Step of Learning
4. Seek Improvement: The Focus of Learning
5. Nurture Hope: The Motivation of Learning
6. Develop Teachability: The Pathway of Learning
7. Overcome Adversity: The Catalyst for Learning
8. Expect Problems: Opportunities for Learning
9. Understand Bad Experiences: The Perspective for Learning
10. Embrace Change: The Price of Learning
11. Benefit from Maturity: The Value of Learning