It can and does happen to anyone.
One minute you’re flying, everything’s going well, and you feel great! Then something happens. A setback. A rejection. A failure. How do you pick yourself up and put your confidence back together after something goes badly wrong?
Here are some things you can do to rebuild your self-worth and get that spring back in your step.
Accept that things sometimes happen. A health scare, a bad investment, a big sale that falls through, a relationship breakdown. Whatever your setback, you can be sure that other people have been there before you. And it’s not likely to be the end of the world. There will be other promotions, other opportunities, just not this one. Detach and let this one go.
It’s also true that if you haven’t failed, you haven’t tried. See this setback as a step toward achieving your goal, even if it’s an unintended step!
Take the time to write down what has happened. Not only will it help you process the emotions around failure, but you will also likely gain some valuable insight into what happened. You won’t feel so helpless, and you can start to take steps to recover.
Ask for feedback or advice from someone you trust. You might feel vulnerable right now but getting someone else’s perspective will help you work out what to do next.
3. Be kind to yourself
An important step in moving on from a setback is the ability to forgive yourself.
Don’t take the setback personally. Hopefully, you have been embezzling company funds or doing something criminal. So, stop beating yourself up and take responsibility for what’s your stuff, and let the other things go.
If it’s a health setback, make sure you get what you need – whether it’s time off, a different diet or a change in lifestyle.
You can take the sting out of your experience by reframing it. Staying in a negative frame of mind is easy. But to move on and build resilience you need to reaffirm that you will succeed. Put this setback into the bigger context of your past successes and failures. Chances are there is something to learn from this experience that you can use to take you closer to achieving your goal.
Remember it took Edison 1000 failures before he invented the light bulb that eventually worked. He reframed those ‘failures’ as inventing 1000 ways that the light bulb wouldn’t work. He saw failure as a vital part of the invention.
Edison knew that everyone makes mistakes and that the only real failure is not to learn from them.