Five Steps to Fail Forward

five steps to fail forward mlm

I’ll be the first to admit it: it’s really not fun to fail. But these five steps to fail forward, taken from Fail Fast, Fail Often by Babineaux and Krumboltz, really put a whole new spin on failing…

And turning failure into success!


How Did We Get Here?

Before I go over the five steps to fail forward, think about failure for a bit.

When we were kids, it was perfectly fine, normal, and ok to fail, wasn’t it?

  1. When we started walking, and couldn’t do it, did we quit?ย  Of course not!
  2. When we first tried riding a bike and fell, did we quit? No again. We knew it would take time and practice to get good at biking. And sure enough, that’s exactly what happened.
  3. A third example: learning to play an instrument. For those of you who played an instrument as a child, or possibly even have or know a child who is learning to play an instrument, is the child shocked and dismayed when they can’t play Chopin or Beethoven after 3 months of practice? That would be absurd, wouldn’t it?

And yet when did all the rules change?

When did we start telling ourselves we had to be good at things from the get go, and stopped allowing ourselves the freedom to fail and learn from failing?

Well, I’m giving you the permission here and now: It’s time to let yourself fail, again, and learn from it.


For some odd reason this particularly applies to network marketers. Many network marketers drink the kool aid, expecting to make $1,000 their first month, and then are disappointed when it doesn’t happen.

Sure, this happens to a few, but for the vast majority, myself included, those big bucks didn’t happen at the start.

…But think about this a moment: why would you expect to earn a doctor’s salary without getting an equivalent education?


So now that we’ve normalized failure – yes, making mistakes is actually normal and healthy – how do we move on from this solid starting point?


Making Failure Work for You:

Five Steps to Fail Forward

(Go for it! You CAN do this!!!) ๐Ÿ™‚

This video goes into detail about the five steps to fail forward, and how to make failure be a positive force and work for you!

To summarize:

1. Identify your fear – find something that rattles you
2. Reverse your thinking – how can you fail as quickly as possible?
3. DO IT ANYWAY – make mistakes, and have fun doing it, too!
4. Fail forward – learn from the experience
5. Find the next challenge – wash, rinse, repeat


I hope you found this encouragement on the five steps to fail forward a real game-changer. If so, and you’d like more of the same, then I suggest implementing your new knowledge by signing up for the newsletter. As a bonus gift, you’ll get a worksheet for developing a power statement that pairs perfectly with the five steps to fail forward.

What did you find the most insightful or helpful about this article? Please comment below.

And feel free to share with others, using the social media icons below or to the left.

Have a great day,

Reach Ruthanne

PS โ€“ Click here for my favorite way to get leads & prospects to call YOU about your business.

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  • Bellybytes

    Reply Reply July 3, 2017

    Very often it is the fear of failing that prevents us from trying . Thanks for these encouraging words that tell us it is alright to fail!
    Bellybytes recently posted…Where shall I wander? #UBC Day 3My Profile

    • Ruthanne

      Reply Reply July 3, 2017

      I know what you’re saying… been there too! That’s why I wanted to share this optimism to help and encourage others.

  • Morgan

    Reply Reply July 3, 2017

    I loved your post; it’s a nice reminder that failure leads to success. We too often stop at the failure and just decide “I can’t do that”. And that’s a lie!!

    • Ruthanne

      Reply Reply July 3, 2017

      I’m glad, and hope this gave a boost to your day ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Martha

    Reply Reply July 3, 2017

    I like to think there is no such thing as failure. It something doesn’t go as planned, I call it a learning experience and move on and try to do better.
    Martha recently posted…Free Laptop UpdateMy Profile

    • Ruthanne

      Reply Reply July 3, 2017

      It’s most definitely a learning experience – and a mindset shift, because we can learn from all sorts of things.

  • Tracy

    Reply Reply July 3, 2017

    I never really equated “never giving up” as a child with the tenacity we should have now as adults. Maybe we kept on pushing through as children because we had no clue what failure meant. If we fell down, we simply got back up. Failing was not a concept, let alone an option. But as our minds became more capable of reasoning, we just started reasoning ourselves out of success. Thanks for this timely and encouraging post!

    • Ruthanne

      Reply Reply July 4, 2017

      I love your comment about pushing through as children. That’s what we still need to do! We need to keep going. Thanks much.

  • Bing

    Reply Reply July 4, 2017

    that’s a new phrase – fail forward. it’s like a combination of negative and positive. thanks for this article. it is an inspiration. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Ruthanne

      Reply Reply July 4, 2017

      Thanks for the comment, and I’m so glad this was an inspiration for you ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Sara

    Reply Reply July 4, 2017

    Hi, Ruthanne.

    I always wonder when the point is that we stop trying and just accept failure.

    I remember trying and Believing I would do something when I was younger.
    At some point, my belief in my abilities disappeared.

    Slowly but surely it is coming back, I just wish I didn’t lose it.

    I really like Step 5 – Rinse and repeat

    Have you failed today?

    Sara recently posted…Holidays Are for RelaxingMy Profile

    • Ruthanne

      Reply Reply July 4, 2017

      Hi Sara, I didn’t fail today, but I had a little fail yesterday. I also love Step 5 – that is what I did. ๐Ÿ™‚

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