This was not a happy ending story, but it turned out to be one I gained so much knowledge along my life’s journey. It was one of the difficult seasons of my life where I struggled to move beyond a huge setback. For those who have met regret, setbacks, and disappointments; you know that these feelings will consume you deeply and the truth is that – the facts of the situation that brought you to that point of pain are real. Difficult times will always be with us but how we get back up and move on will depend on the willingness of our mind to do so and the strategies we adopt.
I had my fair share in recent times, and it was about the next phase of my career. I had beautiful plans, and good support from within and without. Not to forget my prayer warriors were also on their toes, commanding heaven to come down. Faith was built up and all we had to do was wait on the authority for the final approval. With no fault of mine, but due to a system error, the last approval was denied. And my wall came crumbling down.
I spent the last few hours trying to understand what could have gone wrong. I analyzed all the benefits that were right before me and how I watched them go down the drain. I felt it was over and as a Christian, I was quick to say “perhaps, this is not the will of God for me”. I remember my 12-year-old asking me, “Mum, where is the place of perseverance?” I quickly hushed him away saying it does not apply in this case lol. Poor me!
Many people find themselves at this point and a lot more will, sooner than later. Most times when we are faced with situations like mine, it is okay to cry if it allows you let out the emotions. The most important thing is you need to quickly get up and move on. I read recently that the world will not stop because you have a setback. The earlier you got back up, the better. This is not as easy as it sounds but here are a few remedies that helped me:
- Change perspective: By changing your perspective, you will need to change your reason. This will involve the way you analyze and see the situation at hand. In my case, I had to reason out what led to the denial. Was there anything I did not do well or is there something that went wrong and needed to be addressed. By changing perspective, you will learn to see things from other angles and not necessarily from yours. This act will open your mind to reason and an analysis of facts as against being clouded solely by your opinion.
- Change your vocabulary: In my case, I was DENIED access to my next level and that was clear. But my spouse said to me, you were delayed and not denied. As I pondered on that sentence, I realized that it is within my power to see this setback as a delay and not the other way round. If I see it as a delay, then it gives room for the next opportunity. But if I ponder on the fact that this was a denial, I will wallow in pain, regret and may never get back up.
The use of vocabulary plays a quick trick on the brain as our brain interprets whatever we feed it with. It is important to note that the brain takes in information from the senses (sight, sound, touch, smell, taste) and converts it into electrical pulses. These pulses are processed by different parts of the brain after which the brain determines the best way to use this information and how it should respond to the stimulus. Knowing this fact, you may wish to look for a more empowering vocabulary to replace that feeling or situation that you are in now so your brain may act accordingly.
- Minimize your communications: Not everybody needs to speak with you when you are going through a tough time. Speaking to everyone and recapping the event over and over when you are trying to heal will only weaken you more. Politely tell people you are unavailable and will return their call-in due time. Be careful to do so when you feel more empowered to communicate more positively
- Count your blessings: When faced with bad situations, it is very possible to remember that we once had a good life before the sad eventuality came about. It is important to look deeply and see what other blessings life has got for us, so we do not get swamped with what life has taken away from us or that which we did not receive.
- Quickly recall your happy moments: In my low moments, I thought of the things that spice up my life. I recall how much I enjoyed my yoga classes and how I had to stop because my yoga partner had relocated from my area. I put out a message to the yoga instructor and the mere thought of resuming classes was exciting to me.
- Spend quality time alone: It is very important to spend time alone thinking things out. All the strategy I put above were crafted during the time I sat on my own, by myself and with myself. You can decide to take a walk, sit outside your house watching the stars, or even in your room. The idea is for you to have a comfortable space to think positively. You will be amazed at what you will come up with if you truly engage yourself.