I used to think (well, I still do sometimes) that nobody likes failure and even more so, nobody likes to talk about failure. I must admit, that must have come from my own deep-seated insecurities :)
Jason Calacanis wrote in BusinessWeek, somewhat philosophically, but managing to be practical about the whole thing, about "What to Do if Your Startup Is Failing".
Coming from a first-timer scrawny start-up, I will say that my company has never been far from "flailing", and what Calacanis wrote has been somewhat the way of life around here. Even if you are not a flailing entrepreneur (perhaps you're just a flailing student, or a flailing office worker, or a flailing member of the Communion of Saints!), Calacanis' essay is still worth a read about how to handle such a difficult situation.