Now if this isn’t my area of expertise, I don’t know what is… as I am the Queen of setbacks. Most of which happen at the worst times, and done with the purest of heart. So setbacks definitely hurt a lot more than the norm. But the thing it wasn’t always like that. In my younger years, setbacks were due negligence -my rebellion, which to be honest doesn’t make it any easier to get over but at least you can co-relate the reasoning behind it. Whereas now, it’s more of a beat down or at least feels like it.
But all in all, the one thing that has helped me overcome my adversities is my refusal to stay down. I always think, ‘is that the last thing I want to be remembered for?’, bowing out and throwing in the towel. As though, it’s my last hooray, it was all I had and nothing more to give. But really, is it ever that?! Or is it that we no longer want to give?! We no longer have the courage to continue going?! The strength to keep pushing… and at that point, we reach this idea of ‘why even bother?!’ Which is probably the most pivotal point.
Because the question then becomes… why did you even start?! For if you weren’t going to finish the race, you shouldn’t have started to begin with. As life would have probably been a lot easier. So of course, it is going to be rough. Problem is so many of us, want the exceptional without being the exception. But being the exception is what creates the exceptional. We can’t bow our heads at the first sign of rocky waters, calling a quits to feel sorry for ourselves. Acting as though we gave it all we had, when really what we did was give it all wrong. As there is always more to give, it is understanding how to give it. And that requires looking where we went wrong.
Take the analogy of the race: Why did we run out of breath on that lap? Was it a fumble that was taken earlier? Or panic set in? Did we not train enough? Drink too much water? Eat too little? Were we lacking in pacing ourselves? Did we overcommit? Did we stop for too long? etc..
In order to move forward, we must first understand what brought us back. What did we fail to do? Fail to see? Fail to take note of? And YES, I’m notorious for self-blame, I am my own worst enemy, but that is how you truly come to progress in life. Looking at yourself and not anyone else. It can definitely lead down a rabbit hole, but if done productively and constructively it can lead you into a whole new understanding.
You see, with every setback there is a lesson. A lesson to not make the same mistake, but learn from it. A lesson to appreciate what was lost, express gratitude for what was, as majority of the time it could have be worst. Most importantly, setbacks are there to build you, build your resilience and tolerance. They are there to test you on whether or not you want it bad enough. And whether or not you decide to keep going, you still have work to do, because as much as they are lessons, they are eye openers. And should we not open our eyes, bring our awareness to the issue at hand, life will continue slapping us in the face.
Cut The Noise
When our foundation gets shakey, we must take a moment and step back. Reanalyze everything. We don’t build or try to move forward, because whatever we do, we will make it worst in the long run. So instead giving up, take a break to re-situate yourself and figure out what was missed, what was lost and neglected along the way. And get clarity. So that when it is time to move, your foundation is stable. Because, the last thing one should do is jump back into the race while still being injured. Give yourself the time to find your footing and reconnect.
Focus On The Good
During moments of setbacks, we tend to beat ourselves up. And for that reason we must be sure to not harbour on what didn’t work or what isn’t working. We must redirect our focus to what is working and what is going. It is about flipping the script to the positive. For our thoughts become our reality and therefore, we must mind them as much as possible, ensuring to not get stuck in a rut. So though you learnt a lesson and it costed you, you learned a lesson. And learning is valuable all in itself, to which w honour that lesson by embodying it, as it was offered for enlightenment.
Nurture Your Soul
Do things that fill you up, not things that distract you. Do things that establish a sense of fulfillment within you. Meditate. Read. Dance. Move. Time in nature. Whatever gets the flow back into your body and eases your mind. It could just be as simple as turning off technology or running a hot bath, or even cooking yourself a nice meal and watching a movie. Do whatever it is that brings awareness back into your mind and body, calmness to your soul and love into your heart.
I can’t stress this enough. Don’t jump. Find a routine. Build on it and let it flow. Don’t rush, just allow. Be extremely patient with yourself, there might be days where the routine just isn’t the flow. Or the flow isn’t the routine. And that is okay. This is a time of implementing the lesson, allowing it to soak in, so that it registers completely. Integrating it by accepting it, rather than just checking off and going for the kill. Or else, you can very easily find yourself right back to the point of exhaustion and unawareness that led you here. So go slow and steady.
The biggest and most important piece is faith. Faith that it will all be okay, as it has been in the past. And it will be again. It isn’t the first time we dealt with adversities and it wouldn’t be last, and like this time, the others seemed impossible to overcome, and yet you overcame. So no pity party or victimization of any kind. Push forward in that all will work itself out better than you could ever imagine.
And if this still doesn’t help you move forward, remember why you started. Write it down. Remind yourself every day and every night. Because the worst thing you can do is stop when you have already started -progress is always being made, until it is not. So keep going, even if it takes a bit to find your footing. You to this!