Things don't always go well. Despite how much effort we put in, how much planning, how much emotion, and work; sometimes we get knocked down and run into setbacks. But, no matter what happens, we can always find ways to overcome and get back on track.
Setbacks, minor and major, are a part of life. We are better for them.
But, what do we do after a huge setback or failure? How do we pick ourselves up and come back stronger? How do we get going again?
Fortunately (and unfortunately), I've had my share of failures over the years and have learned a few things about the comeback.
First, you need to get your head straight after a setback. Most of the time, we let our emotions govern our reactions - fear and anger being the most damaging. When you have a major setback, some of the first emotions one feels are typically fear and anger (think fight or flight). Fearfulness of not knowing what to do or how to fix things, and anger at the situation itself. Recognize this and isolate those feelings. They are real. Acknowledge and deal with them. You are going to have them, but you can't find a solution or make the right decisions when they are clouding your ability to think logically.
There are a few things you also need to understand.
In the video below, at about the 5 min mark, Tony Robbins talks about overcoming huge setbacks and makes some really good points to go along with the above.
Once you have gotten the initial emotional responses out of the way and resolved to fix things, you are ready to go to work. Overcoming a huge setback comes down to two actions:
1.) Ask "How?" and don't use words like "can't," "won't," or any variation of them
When you use words like "can't" or "won't," you shut your brain down right there. You stop yourself and your ability to think and act in a positive way. But, asking "how?" does two things. 1.) Asking "how?" activates your brain to start thinking of solutions, and 2.) It opens up your mind to look for possibilities.
So start by asking, "How can I move forward in the best way?" And then get out a piece of paper or journal and just starting writing. Write everything that comes to mind. Do a total brain dump.
Once you've done this, you can review your writings and will find specific solutions that you can put action plans around and move forward. As stated above, you are going to face reality and that means there will be pain, but you'll figure it out and do the things you need to do to get back on track.
2.) Embrace the fact that you will need to keep pushing, adapting, and finding a way through
Once you start to take action from your list of "how?," not everything will workout as planned. Sorry, it just doesn't. Perseverance is crucial here. Get comfortable with feeling a little like a punching bag. But don't quit or stop. Every attempt you make or action you take will get you close to overcoming. Just keep pushing.
If you are like me and have been through a lot of these scenarios, you know what I am saying. I've been broke, back on top, lost a big chunk, come back, etc. Even when I've reached high success levels in my businesses to where anyone on the outside would think the business is so successful, it doesn't have setbacks anymore, we do. Just as Tony talks about in the video above. No matter what level you reach, you will always have things to overcome. The problems are just different (usually bigger). And when you've attacked things head on and been the "punching bag" over and over again and continue to push through; you know you'll find a way because you have developed that faith and belief in your ability to do so.
Just remember, there are no perfect outcomes. You cannot please everyone, even yourself, all the time. Many times it's trying to please everyone and not dealing with what we know we should, that causes the setback/failure in the first place!
If you learn to handle the emotions of failing, develop an unshakable faith in yourself, take action, and keep pushing until you overcome; you will get back on top....with a little time to enjoy the sweet taste of victory before the next setback comes and gives you the chance to take yourself to the next level!
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