Hope is always at its highest at the beginning of any pursuit. New Years resolutions thrive on hope. We enter the new year telling ourselves that this will be the year and failure is not an option.
The truth is, we are setting ourselves up for failure if we don´t factor in an intentional response to failure.
At some point we will fail. If we don´t, then our aspirations were too small and that´s ok, if that´s what you want. But most of us want more for ourselves. The idea that we are capable of so much more, that life has so much more to offer is hard wired in us.
We were made for so much more than this!
To go after that life, the good life, will require that we face challenges and disruptions in our lives (make sure you read next week´s post). Those challenges and disruptions can, and often do, result in experiencing feelings of failure.
I will define failure here as experiencing a result/outcome that is different than what we expected, hoped for, or desired. Failure is usually perceived as something negative. It leaves one feeling disappointed or frustrated. It´s a pivotal moment in our journey.
By February of 2024 approximately 98% of individuals that started out the year with hope will have abandoned their goals and aspirations. Many will give up feeling the affects of failure and the loss of hope. There´s a verse in the Bible, Proverbs 13:12, which says that “hope deferred makes the heart sick.”
There are a lot of heart sick people walking around simply because they did not have a way to address the outcomes they experienced when challenges and disruptions occurred.
There´s an alternative to giving up and never getting what you desire. Here are some insights and steps you can take to making 2024 the year it all happens:
Failure is an inevitable and natural part of life. Once we embrace that, we can better prepare ourselves mentally and emotionally for the obstacles that may arise.
It's essential to have a plan in place to navigate and learn from these inevitable …challenges and disruptions in our journey.
Here are some things to consider:
Reframe it: Shift Your mindset from failure to one of learning. Instead of viewing failure as the end of the road, adopt a growth mindset that sees failure as a valuable learning opportunity. Every setback provides a chance to assess what went wrong, identify areas for improvement, and ultimately grow stronger. By reframing failure as a stepping stone to success, you'll be better equipped to bounce back and continue moving forward.
Create a Contingency Plan: While it's impossible to predict every challenge you may face, having a contingency plan in place can help you respond more effectively when setbacks occur. Consider potential obstacles related to your goals and outline strategies to overcome them. This proactive approach can mitigate the impact of failure and keep you on track.
When it comes to working out/running, I don´t allow myself to miss two training sessions in a row. I also have set workout routines that I can use at home if I can´t get to the gym. If it´s a busy day, then I incorporate 10 minute segments throughout the day instead of a full hour all at once. This is helpful if you are an all or nothing type person. These back-up plans allow me to pivot and still get the work done.
Seek Feedback and Support: Don't be afraid to reach out for feedback and support when facing challenges. Constructive insights from coaches or mentors can offer valuable insights and alternative perspectives. Surrounding yourself with a supportive network can provide the encouragement needed to persevere through difficult times.
Reflect and Adapt Using Appreciative Inquiry: After experiencing failure, take the time to reflect on the experience. What went well? What did you learn? What could be done better/differently in the future? Use these reflections to adapt your approach and refine your strategies. Failure only becomes a true setback if you fail to learn from it.
By anticipating the possibility of setbacks, shifting your mindset, creating a contingency plan, seeking support, and reflecting on your experiences, we can turn failure into a catalyst for growth.
Remember, it's not about avoiding failure but about how we respond to it that truly defines our path to success. Embrace the challenges, learn from them, and keep moving forward.
The rest of the verse from Proverbs says that, “… when the desire comes, it is a tree of life.” You don´t have to lose hope. Failure is never really final. Our success stories are still in the making.
Here´s to Discovering a Happier Healthier You