Does Failure Make Us Stronger?


Richard Sandberg , Senior Staff Writer

The age old expression “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” stems from the Ancient Roman philosophy of Stoicism. This idea that trial by fire can fortify one’s own inner strength and the experience or struggle itself is a direct cause for said fortification is the backbone of a true Stoic. Additionally, they believe that voluntarily exposing oneself to discomfort, even if only minor, can make joyous experiences even more so. Despite this philosophy being of antiquity, it can be adapted to apply to modern life.

Angelina Russ, a student at Hubbard High School believes fervently that failing is one of the many steps to success. “It [failure] can give experience towards finding your way out of difficult situations and then being able to bounce back.” The importance of not dwelling on your mistakes but rather embracing and learning from them is so easily applicable to every facet of life. The uniqueness of this ideology comes from its malleability and flexibility to whatever situation it may be needed for. Knowing that no matter the shortcoming one may face, there is always a silver lining. 

An intelligent student, athlete, member of society, or citizen should have the ability to learn from their mistakes within their repertoire and utilize it as frequently as needed. Not repeating the past and rather forwarding on the individual’s self journey can pose a challenge in its own right, but the fortification that comes with making mistakes can slowly build up the necessary callouses to prevent the damage they may have first caused. “Mistakes are part of the human experience,” says David Williams. “It’s important to not let things get underneath your skin because it’s all only temporary.” Keeping these mindsets close to heart can help to prepare against the inevitable hiccups along the road to success. The impediments are only as grand as one sees them.