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I was out on Saturday night with a dear friend – I call him my Peter-pan mate – as I doubt he’ll ever grow up.
Anyway, Pan chuckled as he noticed me double take (I thought I was being subtle) as a certain gent sat down across the room from us. “You really do have a type don’t you Kate?!”
“Whatever do you mean?!” I replied as I tried to block out the well muscled and well tattooed gent from my peripheral vision.
As much as in my younger years I did have a type and I do still appreciate the hard work, discipline and focus that a strong physique necessitates, there’s something much more attractive than a strong body… a strong MIND.
In todays show:
How To Pick Yourself Back Up From Disappointment.
Here are a few of the things I’ve come to realise as the years and experiences accumulate:
- It’s easy to be positive, happy, generous and grateful when the going is good.
- It’s natural yet not practical to hope for a comfortable, predictable or fair life.
- If you had to choose from ALL the lots in life… dumped in a big steaming heap of crappy calamities ORjust keep your own challenges then most of us would likely choose our current lot in life rather than risking worse.
Which brings me to, 6 steps To Pick Yourself Back Up From Disappointment.
Steps 1-3 are all about the strong mind to bring to any disappointment. I’m also going to include a ‘Quality Question’ and a ‘Move Forward Mantra’ with each step to make them a little more implementable.
Step one: PERSPECTIVE.
Your Quality Question to ask yourself as you start to pick yourself up from disappointment: “When have I survived something equally or more disappointing in the past?”
Now this can relate to both yourself and also to other people.
One of the fab things about all those not so fab things that most of us have endured in our past is they prove just how much we can survive. Each personal challenge accepted and won or even just endured and survived (!) is your own personal reference point for success.
You’ve done it before so you can do it again. Or, if we’re talking about your biggest disappointment to date?
Someone else has done it / survived it before… and so can YOU.
The Move Forward Mantra I like to remind myself of at such a time: If someone can do it, anyone can do it.
This could relate to a failed business venture that has seen you haemorrhage heart-breakingly huge sums of cash-o-la… or maybe it’s as simple as falling off the wagon with your meal planning or exercising again.
We’ve all heard the business success stories of people who’ve stubbornly pushed on through after countless defeats and disappointments.
On a smaller scale, please know every single day someone who promised themselves “I’ll stick to it this time” lets themselves down with their commitment to the eating and exercising actions that will deliver the results they’re seeking. Equally every single day someone moves forward after letting themselves down and wins at the thing that has disappointed them in the past. If someone can do it, anyone can do it.
Step two: FOCUS.
Your Quality Question to ask yourself: “What about this is within my power to control / change?”
Focusing on that which is beyond your power to control is futile. It’s also a huge waste of time, energy and JOY. When disappointment strikes, choosing your focus is one of the only things that cannot be taken away from you.
Of course it’s natural to experience thoughts such as “what’s the point?” “why bother?” “why does this always happen to me?” However the important thing is to keep those negative thoughts fleeting. To send them packing rather than to entertain them. You don’t want to invite those thoughts into your home – your MIND is your home in this metaphor – because if you do they’ll get comfy. They’ll invite their friends. It’s going to get out of control.
The simplest thing is to take control of your thoughts straight after a disappointment. You’ve already acknowledged that either you or someone else has survived a similar experience in the past (step one) and now it’s time to decide on how best you can turn this situation around.
The Move Forward Mantra: You’ve got this.
It’s amazing how when you focus on everything within your control there seems to be more within your control than you first thought. That’s because your mind starts filtering in the useful info and filtering out the useless info. As you can imagine our minds are hit with more information every single moment than we could possibly cope with. What you choose to filter in is based your beliefs, experiences and the quality questions you ask yourself so, You’ve got this.
Step three: POSSIBILITY.
Your Quality Question to ask yourself: “How can I REFRAME this to my advantage?”
After any disappointment the thing that’s going to compel you to try again is HOPE. Humans are resilient. It’s amazing how little incentive or hope we need to pick ourselves back after a defeat. Our default setting is to keep trying. I genuinely believe that. However sometimes we need to use our amazing minds to get a little creative so far as hunting down that hope. The possibilities.
The Move Forward Mantra: You always get another chance.
The reframe is one of my favourite mind tools. It allows you to see a situation in the way that will open up new possibilities and encourage you to take the more beneficial action. There are two main types of reframe. The context reframe takes a behaviour or experience that appears to be negative, disappointing / distressing and shows how that same behaviour or experience might be useful in another context. So missing out on a promotion is making you available for the next even better opportunity. Feeling trapped within a job or business that does not give you joy is the perfect incentive to send every spare moment pouring your passion and drive into your side gig, or the study that will allow you to escape.
The content reframe simple changes the meaning you assign an experience. For example as a young child I used to feel sad whenever I heard an ambulance until my mum told me: “Katie, someone waiting for that ambulance is going to be very happy to hear that siren.”
No matter what disappointment you might be picking yourself up from remember, You always get another chance.
Steps 4-6 are all about moving forward in a positive direction after disappointment.
Step four: THE NEXT BEST STEP.
Your Quality Question to ask yourself: “What would my most ideal self do in this situation?”
I’ll often ask myself this if I’m feeling stuck. I think most of us have an idea of our ideal self. That person we’d love to be. If you really struggle to picture that YOU, then think of the person you really respect and ask yourself: “What would (that person) do in this situation?”
More often after a disappointment it’s not that you have zero idea of what to do next. It’s just that you’re feeling a little beat down. A little helpless and hopeless. However (in step three) you set your mind the task to get a little creative reframing and hunting down that hope. The possibilities.
So now it’s just a matter of deciding on and committing to the next best step. Of course there are limitless next steps and it could get a little overwhelming right?
The Move Forward Mantra: All you need ever focus on is ONE day at a time.
That’s all that is ever required. You can choose to get ahead of yourself, stress about future obstacles that may never even happen and encourage overwhelm or you can simply focus your energy on achieving your top tasks for today. Overwhelm is one of my favourite topics to blog and podcast about. Here’s a link to my show on: Getting Over Overwhelm, and remember, All you need ever focus on is ONE day at a time.
Step five: SOMETHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO.
Your Quality Question to ask yourself: “What has reliably helped me feel better – before, during AND after – in the past?”
The before, during and after qualifiers are important as they’re there to save you from drowning your disappointment in food, alcohol or whatever your potentially detrimental vice might be. My Go To’s are: Time with someone I love who I can have an open honest chat / laugh / cry with, time unplugged and un-rushed in nature or Yes on occasion, precious ME time in the gym.
The Move Forward Mantra: Nurture gratitude not fear.
You’ll have noticed my Go To’s to help me feel better do not require unrealistic time or resources. They are simple, healthy pick me ups that are relatively easy to schedule and easy to feel grateful for. The thing about something to look forward to and subsequently something to feel grateful for is that as well as injecting some fun back into your day, Gratitude is the antidote to fear. I dig in with this is show #011.
Disappointment can leave you fearful to risk trying again. However you must pick yourself up and try again. Thankfully (!) you literally cannot experience both fear and gratitude at the same time. So, Nurture gratitude not fear.
Step six: THINGS TO AVOID.
Your Quality Question to ask yourself: “What has predictably made me feel worse in the past?”
In the same way that you know what helps you feel better, you’re at least as clear so far as what is entirely unhelpful. To avoiding repeating past mistakes, communicate those detrimental actions, habits, thoughts to yourself and commit them to a Things To Avoid list. My list includes: Playing the comparison game on social media, skipping any of my daily keystone habits and over scheduling myself.
The Move Forward Mantra: With discipline comes freedom.
Of course it takes discipline to avoid the comforting habits that you may have fallen back on in the past. Today is about picking yourself up though, not falling back! I genuinely believe the little, seemingly inconsequential daily disciplines are what allow you to enjoy the most consequential freedoms in life: Health and how you ultimately spend your time and who you spend it with. I heard it put convincingly in a podcast recently. Shout out to The Jordan Harbinger Show episode #15 with retired Navy SEAL commander and all-round SUPER-DISCIPLINED-GENT, Jocko Willink. I’ll paraphrase however Jocko who reliably gets up to exercise at ‘stupid o’clock’ describes how warm, comforting and cosy bed is when the alarm goes off. However that soft pillow your head is so comfy on? It’s there to suffocate your dreams! Do not let it, With discipline comes freedom.
That’s it for this week in Healthification. Huge gratitude to YOU for sharing this week with me. I respect your time and appreciate your support – so Thank you!
The Healthification podcast is proudly bought to you by my FREE ‘Easy Vegan’ plan. It took me 25 years to transition from a meat eater to a happy, healthy, non-judgemental Vegan! You can do it in just 3 days with my simplified ‘easy vegan’ plan! Get the fit, strong, and healthy plant based body you deserve… while avoiding ALL the mistakes I made along the way!
Till next time, remember Creating a body and life you love is Freedom. (If this ex-carb queen, NON-genetically gifted, naturally uncoordinated VEGAN-chick can do it – so can YOU!!!)
If you liked ‘How To Pick Yourself Back Up From Disappointment‘ you’ll also like: Preventing A Cheat Meal Becoming A Binge Fest!
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