Featured image for “FAILURE IS A DISGUISED WIN”


December 24, 2023

Dear friends,

I have shared the story of some of the scholarships and opportunities I have supposedly failed to secure. If you missed it, click to read my article ” The power in failing: Be thankful for your failures”

This short piece intends to contextualize that story but unlike my other articles, I promise this will be short.

It was the year 2019 after many failed attempts. I had so many hopes that I would secure the Commonwealth PhD scholarship not only because I was a Commonwealth Alumni who benefited from the Commonwealth Shared Scholarship to undertake my M.Sc but also because my confidence was boosted by the number of PhD admissions I had already secured. I secured PhD admission offers and gotten positive leads from London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), Bangor University, Cardiff University, Queen Mary University London (QMUL) and Brunel University London. In fact, my prospective supervisors in the UK were excited to have me on board. Unfortunately, our hopes were dashed when I got the rejection email. I was not awarded the scholarship.

Although I felt sad and defeated, all I did was keep applying and looking for other opportunities. In one of my many searches online, I saw the advert for Queensland University of Technology (QUT) Annual Scholarship Round and emailed a few prospective supervisors. As usual, a few rejection emails came in from the prospective supervisors some of which had genuine reasons. Strategically, I changed my approach and my amazing current Principal supervisor Dr Julie Anne King got in touch with me. We had our first skype call and together with my current associate supervisors Dr. @Jo Durham and Dr.Kaeleen Dingle, my research proposal was rebranded with the stream of feedback I enjoyed from them. I put in my application for admission and a scholarship. The result is seen in the email attached – a fully-funded PhD scholarship.

AAP’s PhD offer

You see, my many rejections made me sad but the trick was, the rejection emails were the fuel I needed to keep pushing and applying. My mantra was simple:

“Failure is a disguised Win”.

An application rejected somewhere could be accepted somewhere but you will not know this if you stop after the first rejection email or feedback.

Failure is simply the uncoated success you have been waiting for. You uncoat it by trying again until you are accepted.

What rejection have you received recently? Is this for a job? A business contract, a marriage proposal, a music deal? Whatever it is…

It will remain a rejection or failure if you stay still. Dust yourself up, go back into the river, and swim faster and better. The tide will direct you to the next WIN. This is not a post drawn from theory or hearsay. These 2 emails are your proof that it works.

I know this because I have been there.
I know this because I have tested rejection.
I know this because my failure was my disguised win.
I know this because I am still FAILING and transforming my failures to my WINS.

#AAPTalks #CommunityDevelopmentWorker #Aa2Zi