I could let my failures surround me and I could submit to that nagging feeling in the back of my head that I'm not good enough, that I can't be good enough, that I won't be good enough. But instead of dwelling on thoughts that might not be true, I'm looking at this from a different angle. Sure, I've failed. I've lost clients and proposals, disappointed people, disappointed myself, and and I've come up short in a lot of aspects of my life.
Just a few hours ago I asked myself why I'm failing so terribly at so many things. After a bit of introspection, I realized that I've been putting myself out there more than usual. I've been seeking out and accepting opportunities that are well outside my comfort zone. Some of these ventures into the unknown have been great personal successes; some of them have been tremendous flops. From both the successes and the failures, though, I can learn something. I can look at what I did wrong or right, and why I failed or succeeded. I can move forward.
From now on I'm going to be a bit more conservative with my decisions because, frankly, failure sucks; and all this seething disillusionment with not meeting my own expectations is becoming too much to bear all at once. Next time I'm faced with a tremendous challenge, I may not be prepared, but at least I'll know how to handle the situation to increase my odds of success.