What to do when faced with a major setback

OK, so it’s easier said than done.

I write a lot about resilience and about the importance of keeping on keeping on.

Unfortunately, it’s always easier to write about these things when everything is going well or even relatively well.

But I’ve just been struck by a major setback and I’m in a set of shock and fear.  Now what!?

This is how I’m dealing with it.

I find that the biggest thing that is helping me right now comes from Kirsten Neff’s book ‘Self Compassion’.

One of the things I got out of it is a mantra I find very soothing and which goes like this.

“I’m having a really hard time right now  (the idea is not to make myself wrong for feeling the way I do)

but I’m not the only one.  Lots of people feel as I do.  (knowing other people feel the same tells me I’m not alone)

This is the time to be kind and compassionate to myself.”  (this reminds me how I need to treat myself which is gently instead of beating myself up)

and then, this is what I do next.

I speak to myself in a gentle tone of voice as if I were talking to a small child.

“Sweetie, I know this is hard.  It’s OK to feel as you do.  Take a deep, slow breath to relax.  Why don’t you take a break and do something nice, something that comforts you and makes you feel good.  Remember, there are ways out of this situation and they will soon become clear to you.”

I can’t tell you how soothing this is.

The other thing I do is I keep doing things, I keep taking action.

I have a workshop to run for Surrey University this coming Wednesday and a talk to deliver for the University of Roehampton in the week after so I need to prepare and practise.  That’s a positive thing to do.

And there’s something else I’ve learned over the years.

When I don’t know what to do, then I do anything, something, however small.  I have found that this helps me when I feel fearful or stuck.  I’ve discovered that taking action, any action raises my energy levels and I become more alert so, sooner or later, new ideas come in.

OK, so I’m not there yet but one thing I do know – I will never give up!

I’d love to know, what do you do when you experience a serious setback?

With love and gratitude



P.S.  If you need a helping hand, contact me for a free Obstacle Smashing Exploratory Session.  By the end of it you will walk away with at least one idea to get you moving on your path to a happier and more fulfilled life.  Text me on 07903 795027 or email me on sue@sueplumtree.com.






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