Instead of viewing tests, interviews, applications as measures of self-worth, we could view them as benchmarks that try to approximate one’s state of preparedness for a particular task/role. The benchmarks are definitely not perfect, and their accuracy vary based on the amount of work that goes into the creation of the benchmarks as well as the ability of the people who conduct them. Not meeting a benchmark may say that one is not prepared enough for the task at that particular point in time, but it is not a reflection of how one would perform in the future. Moreover, one should also be aware of the possibility that the preparation of the benchmark is faulty, in which case, one can try to find other ways of proving one’s ability or even reconsider one’s assessment of the party that prepares the benchmarks (if passing the benchmark means that one would be joining that party).
In addition, it might also be useful to create our personal benchmarks and deadlines in order to facilitate decision-making. Rather than wondering or postulating if we could be up for a task/role in the future, we could create incremental benchmarks that are closer to the current time-frame to assess our state of preparedness for the future task/role.