[usually plural] a weakness or fault in somebody/something She is aware of her own failings. The inquiry acknowledges failings in the judicial system. Jealousy is a very human failing.Extra examples The investigation exposed huge failings in the system of medicines regulation. Vanity is her worst failing. We all have our failings. an official report into intelligence failings the very human failing of wanting to tell other people what to do Despite its failings, capitalism has brought many benefits. Despite my more obvious failings, I was capable of looking after myself. He should think about his own failings instead of constantly finding fault with others. She was well aware of her own failings. The enquiry noted several failings in the current system. We have sought to identify the failings of the examinations procedure.