This week we are talking about how to handle those annoying setbacks when they arise, as they will. For sure, we have expectations about how we want things to go in life and also, how we think they “should” go. Nevertheless, setbacks will show up and how we approach them can have just as much influence on our success as much as things going as planned. Also, how we manage things not going well also just flat out adds to our enjoyment in life. So, there’s a motivator for you. One of the greatest things we know about managing setbacks is that complaining about them doesn’t really help.
One of the things that we need to check out about our daily annoyances is that we actually can add a layer onto these annoyances by thinking that if something isn’t going well, that it has something to do with us as a person. As well, there is a great distinction that needs to be made about planning for things versus our “expectations” about the thing. To think that everything is going to go perfectly as planned is really one of the big set ups for us in life. But, does that mean that we don’t expect the best? Of course not. It does mean however that we need to hold onto our expectations loosely and also, not entangle our sense of value and what the setback means about us as a person.
But there is also another important part to managing our setbacks that is rarely talked about and rarely practiced. One of the most powerful things that we can do to manage our setbacks is to feel our feelings about it. In other words, if we feel angry, allowing ourself to feel that energy in our body and to be with our sensations can create a major shift for us. Being able to just allow our feelings does three things for us. First, it keeps us from being too “high-minded” and to make decisions based on wanting to avoid our feelings. Secondly, it allows us to be present to the option of learning. And lastly, this affords us a moment of acceptance. So one easy step is just to allow ourselves to have our feelings.