Failure is not about whether or not you fall in the hole, it’s about whether or not you climb out of it.
The last month, business wise, has been weird. Good weird or bad weird. I’m not sure yet, but hopefully by the end of this article it will be more clear.
As I was saying, it’s been a month. A total entrepreneurial roller coaster of a month. Some really great things have happened that I wasn’t expecting and I am really excited and grateful for those. But just the other day I was doing my month end business goal review and I discovered I had not met some of the really important ones on there.
Now, my shortcomings were mostly due to circumstances out of my control, but I’m not one to shirk off all responsibility, because we are never totally blameless in anything. This is why I said mostly.
So the mini crisis. Once I realized that I did not meet some important monthly goals something inside me went all akimbo and a whole flood of emotions came to the surface. Stress, frustration, and discouragement, to name a few. And no amount of self-compassion, understanding or reasonable thinking was making a dent in all the feelings of awful.
I didn’t know what to do. And I found myself clinging so tightly to the disappointment. So tightly that my knuckles were getting white. And in my attempt to gain more control over it by grasping and clinging, I was actually making things worse.
And then, as if a light bulb went on in my head, I remembered the passage in the happiness building research I’ve been doing where it talks about the times when we find ourselves holding on to something too tightly, what we need to do is figure out a way to release it.
So I thought an easy way to do some releasing of what I was clinging to was to give to someone else. So I sat down and gave to a good friend who is raising money for a very worthy charity.
This really helped me to let go of the frustration and stress, but I still found myself holding on to discouragement and self-doubt. And I needed to get those buggers off my back.
So I went for a run and called my big brother who is also a business owner, and a very successful one at that. I called him for a pep talk to help me get my head back on straight (yeah, we do that in our family).
And that really helped me to stop coming down so hard on myself. I was able to get some much needed encouragement when I just didn’t have the strength to be my own cheerleader.
But I wasn’t totally through it all yet. I still needed to talk out and process the whole thing verbally. And through that, I was finally able to gain some clarity and come to the 2 big truth bombs that hit me like a Tyson uppercut.
1. There is no such thing as an easy button. SO if you have big goals and you want to get there, get prepared to work your butt off because ain’t no nothing that’s worth a ding dang darn gonna come easy. For anyone, anywhere. Unless you’re Kim Kardashian.
2. As a business owner, or even just as a human being for that matter, we go through 2 seasons: seasons of growth and seasons of reflection. So when things aren’t growing or going the way we’d expected, this is the perfect time to sit back and reflect on where we are, how far we’ve come, where we’d like to go, and what might be worth changing or tweaking in order to help keep us in a forward momentum.
Now I’ve done the dirty work for you. So next time you’re in some kind of mini crisis here’s the step by step process to get you through and out the other side – and dare I be so bold as to say, stronger and wiser than you were before? You may not have to do all of them. Stop when you feel like you’re out of the woods, or keep going until you are.
1. Identify the problem and figure out what you’re holding on WAY too tightly to:
Money? Resentment? Having to be right? Your own ego? Not allowing yourself to fail? Needing to be perfect all the time?
2. Think about what action you need to take to let it go:
Give away some money? Share some information? Have some grace for someone? Decide to be wrong? Get messy?
3. Literally move that really intense negative emotional energy through and out:
Do something physical (exercise, singing at the top of your lungs, using a punching bag, sitting alone in your car and yelling out what you’re feeling). Whatever. You get the idea.
4. Call one of your people who are good for it, and tell them you need a pep talk:
aka. Tell them to tell you why you are awesome.
5. Assess and Reflect:
Now, once your ego is feeling a little more on track, and reason has re-entered the arena, you can take a step back and honestly look at and talk through or journal about the situation.Think about and reflect on what you may need to do differently. What changes do you need to make in your business life or personal life to help you get to your goals? To help you get around this crisis?
Now, notice, experience and appreciate your ability to take deep, calm breaths again.
Crisis overcome. You’re done. You did it.
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