Careers Advice Blog

If at first you don’t succeed try, try, try again

No comments

They’re words we hear time and time again at our parent’s knee when we’re little “If at first you don’t succeed try, try, try again”. This simple mantra is repeated every time we fail to tie our shoes, score a goal or recite our times tables. It’s designed to encourage us not to give up and to push ourselves past our comfort zones to achieve our full potential. However, it’s easy to forget that this is good advice for everyone, not just frustrated preadolescents on the verge of a full-flung temper tantrum. It’s an important mantra to remember in our later years as we embark on the path of education and career progression. 

As we progress on the path to achieving our life and career goals, we will often experience moments of frustration and obstacles that cause us to believe that the path before us is unpassable. And when this happens we’re left with a simple choice. Do we quit? Or do we try, try, try again?

The quitter’s impulse

It’s important to take a moment to understand the psychology of quitting. We usually quit, not because we are lazy or don’t care enough… but because we give in to self-defeating thoughts. We let ourselves believe that we’re not good enough or don’t deserve success. But this is fallacious thinking. Our performance in a university entrance exam or at a job interview is not the only indicator of our worth. 

We need to dust ourselves down and try, try, try again. 

College and University Admission

If you don’t get on the university course of your dreams this can be a devastating blow. But this doesn’t mean that your career must forever be derailed. It simply means that you’ve experienced a setback. Get feedback to learn what extra work experience or exam results you needed. Consider doing an Immerse Education course or undertaking some exam resits in your free time. You might find that your fortunes change next year when you’re better prepared. 

Job Applications

When you don’t get that job that seemed oh-so-perfect it’s bound to shake your confidence a great deal. Especially if we feel that we did well in the interview and had a good rapport with the panel. However, it’s important to remember that the job was never yours to lose. It may simply be that you were beaten to the post by someone with a little more experience. Keep applying for other jobs in the same organisation or department. Your tenacity will be noticed and appreciated. Loyalty means a lot to employers and if you keep applying for different jobs within an organisation they’re likely to notice how much you care.


Even when you’re well underway on your career journey and you get passed up for promotion this can make you want to keep your head down and fly under the radar, But don’t succumb to the quitter’s impulse. Find out what more you could have done in the interview and see if there are any other responsibilities you can take on that will make you better prepared next time, 

Not only will you be more likely to get the promotion next time around, you’ll be better prepared for the job itself. 

Do you have any sayings/phrases that you live by and you think could help others? Let us know in the comments.

Career CamelIf at first you don’t succeed try, try, try again

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *