Failure Judo: 11 Tools to Make Failure Work for You.

Why “Failure Judo” ?

One of the important tenets of Judo is the following: …resisting a more powerful opponent will result in your defeat, whilst adjusting to and evading your opponent’s attack will cause him to lose his balance, his power will be reduced, and you will defeat him. This can apply whatever the relative values of power, thus making it possible for weaker opponents to beat significantly stronger ones. This is the theory of ju yoku go o seisu.

This idea, that we can use the power of our opponent in our favor, is exactly what we are doing with Failure. While we have learned to avoid failure in the pursuit of success, I am suggesting that we learn to harness failure, and use it for our success.

Reclaiming Failure in our lives and in our work requires more than just good intentions, and more than just the right mindset (although those do help). Having some tools and tactics ready to go then we are confronted with our failures can make the difference between reclaiming our failures and getting beaten by them.

In this series, we’ll look at a number of tactical tools that you can use to convert failures to stepping stones on your journey. For the next 11 days, a new tactic will be posted each day, starting with our first entry:

Visualize Failure

Fail on Purpose

Take Incremental Steps

Manage Loss

Reframe the Experience



Be Meta


Build Community

Take Time to Recover