Lessons of Failure from the Super Bowl LII MVP
According to a 2015 Time/Real Simple poll, 44% of millennials cited ‘fear of failing’ or ‘lack of confidence’ as a major reason preventing them from being more ambitious.
“Failure is a part of life” Nick Foles explained. “It’s a part of building character and growing. Without failure, who would you be? I wouldn’t be here if I hadn’t fallen thousands of times, made mistakes.”
Nick Foles was speaking in front of a hundred or so men and women who were eager to hear his thoughts. Just over 12 hours earlier, he led his team, the Philadelphia Eagles, to their first Super Bowl championship over the defending champion New England Patriots. Just two months earlier it was unlikely Foles would have ever thrown a pass in this game. Being votes game Most Valuable Player would have be unfathomable. That’s why Foles has become an expert on failure, and his thoughts are beneficial for anyone looking for success.
Nick Foles was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles out of the University of Arizona in 2012. He split time as the starting quarterback his first two seasons. Along the way he tied an NFL record for most touchdowns thrown in a game (7) and set a record with the best touchdown to interception ratio (27-2). The start of a promising career will soon experience setbacks in 2014. Foles’ third year ended early after breaking his collarbone midway through the season. He was traded to the Minnesota Viking where he struggled and was released after just one season. The following year he joined the Kansas City Chiefs where he also struggled and was released after just one year.
Nick Foles had enough. No longer passionate about playing, he was planning to retire and get on with his life. With his wife encouraging him to get back in the game, Foles knew what he needed to do. “I had to face my fear” Foles said. “I needed to go back and face my failures.”
Foles got a new start in a familiar place, Philadelphia, where he was content to back up start quarterback Carson Wentz. Everything changed when Wentz tore his ACL in a November game, and Foles found himself back in the starting role, ultimately leading the Eagles to a come from behind Super Bowl win.
If you are unwilling to fail, you won’t be open to embarking on new challenges and taking chances. This leaves people stagnant and under-inflated. Your company should create a culture where it is Ok for employees to fail. This allows employees to think outside the box and take calculated chances without fear of repercussion if things go wrongs. A young child falls hundreds of times before he or she finally learns to walk. What if every child would give up after falling down just a few times. What a tragedy to live in a world where no one is willing to take a step forward to see where it leads them.