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Why do I always fail even when I try my hardest?

236 Answers
Last Updated: 01/17/2022 at 12:03am
Why do I always fail even when I try my hardest?
1 Tip to Feel Better
United States
Moderated by

Alex DS Ellis, MA, LMFT

Marriage & Family Therapist

Feeling depressed or anxious can be so overwhelming. I want to help you feel better and be able to enjoy life. You are not alone and you deserve emotional support.

Top Rated Answers
April 23rd, 2015 6:00pm
Find what you're good at and do that. Remember this quote... “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” - Albert Einstein.
January 29th, 2015 2:31am
Firstly, the word 'fail' is subjective. What does it mean to fail? With this question, the opposite comes naturally. What does it mean to succeed? Society has largely defined success very narrowly, when in reality, real success is when someone gives it their all and tries their hardest, pushing themselves to their maximum potential. The truth is that you aren't failing at all when you're trying your hardest, but succeeding honorably and greatly.
April 22nd, 2015 5:03pm
First, you feel bad because you perceive that you fail at everything. I assume by coming here and sharing this pain you are seeking relief... maybe you have succeeded. Maybe the act of just having the courage to post your question is a success. So, in this sense, I see you have succeeded. Next, you are human, you will fail - you may fail often. I think accepting this helps us to not ruminate on our past failures. If we are entangled in those past failures, the chance that we will fail again is much higher. When we accept the possibility of both success or failure, in the here and now, our anxiety tends to lessen, allowing us to focus more effectively on the task at hand rather than being bothered the whole time by thoughts of past failures and the expectation of a current failure. I won't say think positive, I would say try to accept that you are human, you will fail, you will succeed, breathe, and move forward with your next task. If I appeal to your logical mind, then statistically, you will succeed eventually ;)
April 26th, 2015 8:43pm
No one ever fails. We set our own personal standards so high that we are never likely to reach them.
February 1st, 2017 9:01pm
First off, I am sure that you do not "always" fail! However, you probably feel this way because there is something that you really want, but unfortunately, your efforts do not seem to translate into positive results. Secondly, give yourself a pat on the back for trying your hardest. That in itself isn't easy, and I'm sure it must have taken a lot of strength and determination. And thirdly, I know that it is very disheartening to feel that your everything isn't "good enough", especially when we have always been fed the expectation that "trying your hardest" equate to success. I bet that it's very exhausting to think that you've got to put in the effort again, to maybe, possibly not attain something that you're satisfied with. But that's what you gotta do. Keep trying. I know you might not want some motivational talk (or perhaps you do), but that's life right? When you fall, you just got to pick yourself up. Of course, give yourself a break and take a rest, and when you're ready, try again :) We all do it. Don't give up! You are not a failure! :)
June 14th, 2016 3:27am
Life is set up for us to have failures and set backs. It is what makes life not boring. If you didn't fail, you would never learn any lessons. When you fail. don't think of it as the opposite of success. Just think of it as a stepping stone to it. No one would be successful without failure.
October 26th, 2015 2:34am
Failing is a normal part of human nature. Even the most successful people have failed many times before succeeding. Practice ,strategy,concentration,planning, hard working,and determination are a few words to describe what you might need to succeed. Success is not easy, but if you really want it , then you will find a way. It might take time and you might even make more mistakes. Sometimes you even need to find new paths, be open minded and creative about decision making. When you put your mind into "survival mode"(meaning trying your best) then you are able to be much more effective in how you do anything. Success might require a lot of skills and maybe a few really well skill(s). Try to find out what your skilled at and want to be skilled at and what you enjoy. Many people are skilled very well at the things they enjoy the most because it makes it much more easyer for them to do so. But even then it can get very hard and you might want to quit. Just remember, as long as you try in life, you no longer will be worryed even when you failed something. Because you will still have a other chance to succeed. If your chance to succeed is even 0.00000001% then you can still succeed.
July 20th, 2015 1:45am
When things don’t go the way you’d like them to it’s hard to believe you’ll ever improve, but just because you don’t do so well now doesn’t mean you won’t succeed in the future. It’s okay to make mistakes, they’re opportunities for life experience.
September 24th, 2016 11:21pm
What/who are you failing? If you're trying your hardest, and you still consider yourself failing, then maybe you need to reconsider what you think of as a success
May 16th, 2015 2:56am
Your generalisation is not accurate. Because people tend to fail than succeed. So if your success rate is 10%, which means every 100 things you do , you succeed 10 things. However, if you do TOO FEW, like you only try 5 things, then chances are you cant gain any success. So you always find failure , it's just becasue your doing are not enough in number.
June 22nd, 2015 9:00pm
In your lifetime, you will fail many times. But that is how you succeed. Failing is not meant to be taken as a bad thing. Once you fail, you will know what to avoid doing next time. Trial and Error is the best way around something. If you don't succeed, try try again. Sometimes your best isn't enough. And that's okay.
June 7th, 2015 9:49pm
It's ok, that's just because you expected a lot more from you and had really high standarts so you feel like you're failing when you not necessairily did :)
October 8th, 2016 12:20am
We never fail when we try our best. Your effort just isn't being recognised, but you shouldn't see it as a failure because we always grow a lot by making our hardest. Maybe the way you are trying hard isn't valuing you effort. For example: if you need to study for a test and you try to just study all the time and every day, you are probably going to burn yourself out. It's important to be healthy in all aspects of life (social, phisical, mental, spiritual) so that your performance keeps good. So if something like that is happening, you can learn with your mistakes and make much better in your next try!
February 27th, 2018 8:11pm
We try our hardest and the result isnt what we wanted, nor was it fast enough. 'WE' judge the result of our actions and desires. The warfare is in the mind, its how we think its how we feel. We always judge ourselves too harshly. We can be very fast to come to the aid of a friend with encouragement. But when it comes to ourselves are often the worst critic. The only 'failure' is in giving up. We give up when we cant tolerate the pain and discomfort. pain and discomfort from feeling we're falling short of our expectations. Wait you say, its other people telling me this too. Anyone who ever tells you you're a failure is a liar, period. Why do we seem to take their negative comments to heart without thinking about them? Why are we so ready to think the worst of ourselves? Human Nature and the teachings of our society. Concentrate on the process over the product. Dont look just at the end result, look at the deep process needed to get there. It takes alot of time, hard work and working properly. yea, all the things we dont want to do these days. We want to skim along and 'try' things. YOLO, right? It's cool to have a look around and taste life. But if you really want to be good at something then suspend your disbelief. You believe you will fail and you look at you're progress and comapre yourself with everyone else and the stress and anxiety make it alot harder. So relax. Try and believe in yourself but give this thing time. Decide you really want to do this. understand it will take time and effort. Its not about being great for awhile. For awhile its all about learning. Study, try, learn from mistakes and change ...LEARN FROM MISTAKES...and keep pushing. From my life...if you're inner dialog is about how you cant do or dont know how to do then youre not giving yourself a chance. Change that dialog to study. If you cant or dont know how to do it then dig deeper. Establish a routine of work/study. maybe it takes you longer, no problem. If it say takes you an extra two years to get your degree who cares, cause you have that degree. So relax, dont be so hard on yourself. Dont set yourself up and catch your negative inner dialog and say it out loud if ya have to..."I CAN and WILL do this". Tell yourself you'll spend the time and effort and GIVE yourself that time and not judge yourself. Do it because you enjoy it and just get lost in the PROCESS.....Life is a
January 25th, 2015 12:53pm
You will get results when you put this effort in the right direction & when you sharpen your axe before cutting down a tree.
February 9th, 2016 8:26pm
We decide a limit for ourself, we give our best and think that I have tried hardest, but try but push yourself more than that and eventually you will succeed.
July 12th, 2017 2:46pm
Sometimes, even after trying so hard, we don't get those opportunities that we need or the platform where we can display our talent. Consistency & patience, maybe, is the key besides hard trials.
August 11th, 2015 1:44pm
Sometimes your brain is consuming to much and you need to relax and take a deep breath and not over work yourself since there is only a certain amount we can all take
October 2nd, 2016 5:16am
Did you choose something out of your skill level? Did you allow yourself mistakes, knowing that nothing is perfect? Are the things you 'fail' at difficult in any way? Were you too stressed, sick, or multitasking? Did you spend enough time thinking about the exact outcome, not just the one you hoped for? Did someone simply not appreciate what you did? All of these could lead to feelings of failure.
May 23rd, 2018 6:28pm
Our brains have a habit of only focusing on the negative and the things we fail as we tend to overthink them. If failing at one thing is getting you down, write a list of achievements and things you do well, no matter how small!! Also remember to never give up, we all fail sometimes and its more than likely you don't fail ALL the time, your mind is just focusing on the negative.
September 20th, 2016 5:23pm
trying your best is enough...theres nothing more you can do..why you fail is not because you are not trying hard enough, its because maybe you are not good at what you are trying to succeed
September 24th, 2016 8:02pm
because there are always the people that could do better than me, always. and i could never do as good as them.
September 25th, 2016 9:31am
Maybe you need to look at your task from a different angle, and create a new plan - then try again.
September 1st, 2015 2:24pm
Trying to do your best doesn't mean it cannot go wrong. Failures are inevitable in life. However, what matters is whether do we choose to get back on our feet after every time we fall. Another thing that matters is what do we learn from it, so that we don't fall because of the same mistakes we had made.
October 16th, 2016 9:34pm
It's not that you fail or you're not trying hard enough. It's just how some situations and people around us are. You focus on you, work harder. Fall seven times, wake up eight.
October 15th, 2016 9:12pm
You only fail when you stop trying. Continue in your quest to do things right .. just be humble.. as a teacher may draw a number.. one person may see a six .. the opposite person will see a nine. Both are not wrong so have not failed . It's the perspective of failure . Everyone sees different
May 9th, 2020 5:50pm
There could be so many ways to look at this. But first, I want to say that it's fantastic that you’ve tried so hard, effort in itself is commendable, and it’s an incredibly valuable trait and skill that many struggle with. Good job and you’ve done well on that aspect:) don’t ever let go of that spirit! One reason could be high expectations we set ourselves, perhaps from external pressures, or simply because we don’t see (or willingly ignore) the many many times other people “fail”. I myself struggled with this for ages—I didn’t realise that I took the quote “do it once, do it right” quite literally (not that I actually did that, but that became an expectation) until a teacher pointed out that I was a perfectionist years ago. And despite that, old habit dies hard, it’s still frustrating when I feel like I couldn’t meet the standard I set for myself (standards that actually require tons of practice to meet) every time even when I put in 110% effort. And sometimes, even the “reasonable” standards others set for me. Because well, everyone has their own paths to walk, and my weakness might just be everyone else’s strength. What helps, is realising that it’s unreasonable to expect “success” every time we engage with a task. “Success” generally requires: 1. a good understanding of the task (e.g. knowing what’s the scope of an exam/what a company wants in an applicant) 2. the right strategy (e.g. a study method that works for you; having a well-crafted resume/prepared for possible interview questions) 3. Practice + effort over time! And most importantly, understanding that each “failure” is not a failure, but a step closer to our goals. Because we can learn something from EVERY experience. This is not me simply saying “to “look on the bright side of things”, but really, every experience is valuable even if it’s not what we wanted/expected. I personally learnt more about my career preference after a long summer internship that “failed” because I was miserable all the time—I now have 1 more thing to look out for the next application round; I learned about weaknesses in my understanding of a subject after (literally) failing its exam many times—I then gave more time to that subject and made sure to consult my teachers; I learned about the extent and power of my resilience after “failing” on so many levels battling with mental health—I’m now more ready for the next fight if it happens again. You see where I’m going with this?:) So don’t be so hard on yourself, you are actually making small progresses. Small, but not insignificant. A word of caution is that learning these doesn’t mean you’ll “succeed” the very next time (remember time+practice?), but it’ll definitely take you closer to unleashing your full potential, and your ultimate goal! Lastly, I’m not sure under what context you asked this question, but please remember that not achieving something doesn’t define you as a person. These are simply trips/falls/barriers in the long journey ahead! I’ll stop here bcos it’s a wall of text already:p but all the best!! xxoo, Amber
May 23rd, 2015 9:33pm
Always? Perhaps you only fail some things some of the time. There is usually a great lesson in failure that will only help you in the future.
October 14th, 2016 4:29pm
you may be trying hard in the wrong areas. or looking at the wrong successes. instead of looking at what you didn't do, look at what you gained form an experience.
October 21st, 2016 3:16pm
You are likely being too hard on yourself and setting unrealistic goals. As is, you are always going to be your own worst critic - we all are. So make it easier on yourself by setting reasonable goals.