This post was inspired by a culmination of a brilliant article on failure by Umair Haque and the genius of Seth Godin. Haque argues that without failure there is no learning and ultimately no growth. Godin argues that the greatest thing that is stopping us from failing, is fear. Fear is such a powerful emotion that sometimes it can ultimately inhibit growth.
Admitting to your own failure is probably one of the hardest things you can do. It's just as hard to admit it to others as it is to admit it to yourself. In my mind, the greatest failure ... is failing to learn from your failures. Sometimes we may think of ourselves as being perfect (typically at things we do well) and so it's very hard to admit failure. Failure can truly shape the course of someone's life. I am sure you can think of a handful of examples to prove this point (my personal favourites probably being Thomas Edison and JK Rowling).
You don't have to be foolish when it comes to failure. My suggestion is focus on learning something and let failure be part of the road you take leading up to it. Persistence sometimes leads to failure, but failure most times leads to growth. So go ahead, try something.. fail.. and grow.