Add all six of the previous tool together, and you get resilience. Resilience gets a bad rap as being the willingness to endure hardship, or the ability to keep going on after being a victim, but in reality resilience is neither of those things. Resilience gives you three things that you need to fight any fear.

The ability to recover quickly. Want to shake it off? If you’re resilient, you’ll be able to step out of the loop of rumination, self-blame and pity and move past a mistake. A business owner makes many of them on a daily basis, usually in their choice of lunch (No, potato chips or crisps do not qualify as a “healthy” or “nourishing” meal). You will underestimate how long it will take you to fill an order.

Anger and remorse keep you in the loop, but if you’re resilient, you’re able to make those two emotions temporary. Yes, you’ll experience them, but you can put them in perspective and limit the amount of time that you feel them. Mourning is healthy, self-indulgent pity parties are not. The difference between the two is how long that your allow them to last. If you’re utilizing poise, you admit that you’ve faced something like this before and survived it. If you’re summoning courage, you’ll push ahead even if the odds don’t look so good. If you’ve focused your energy, you have the fuel to push past this shitty [temporary] episode in your career. Here’s how to do it.

  1. Admit the fact that you made a mistake. It took a lot of work, but I finally trained myself to go into my boss’s office and say “I screwed up.” I followed it up by saying how I screwed up, apologizing, and then telling her how I planned to fix it. I then asked her if she was okay with my fix or if she had another plan she wanted to institute. I soon became the “You tell them the bad news” person in my office.

  2. Focus on the present. If you struggle with Depression, it will remind you of every similar time you’ve made a mistake and tell you that you’re nothing more than a screw up. Anxiety will tell you about the disaster that you just set in place. Bring your mind back to the present, because any problem solving can only be done in the present. Thank God you’ve been working on you meditation, so this should be easier than when you first started.

  3. Relax your muscles. If you’re working on meditation, you’ve started to notice which muscles instinctively clinch up when you’re upset. Mine are usually my shoulders and my hips. Sometimes it’s just my sphincter muscle.

  4. Ask your Left Brain to take a break. It’s the Left’s nature to criticize and point out problems, mistakes, and discrepancies. But Left is not designed to come up with solutions. Tell Left to sit for a while and you’ll let your Right Brain chime in this time. If Left is having trouble letting go, ask it to humor you just this time.

  5. Shoot for good, not great or perfect. The tendency when you make a mistake is to try to answer it with something incredible or stupendous. Don’t set your bar that high; just try to do something good to take the pressure off of yourself. If you aren’t pressuring your Right Brain with unreasonable standards, it can do its work better.

Learn how to fight back effectively. Remember earlier when I said that assertiveness does not equal aggressiveness? This is where the distinction between the two will be most apparent. Yes, you will need to learn how to fight back, but if you try to do it in an aggressive manner, your efforts will backfire. We also need to practice using our emotions effectively. Anger is helpful when a boundary has been violated, but we spin our wheels when we get angry at ourselves for making a mistake. In fact, the anger we direct at ourselves over making a mistake is the most common reason why we don’t learn from it or move on from it.

If your anger is making you an emotional wreck, and you feel as if your emotions are all out of order, you are misusing your anger. If, however, your anger helps you focus your emotions and makes you stronger, it can be a powerful ally. The key is to stop anger from mushrooming into violence. Used responsibly, anger is there to protect you, but if you use it to hurt someone else, you are abusing your own emotions.

Strengthen your mental toughness. I’ll tell you the most effective way to learn mental toughness: say goodbye to perfectionism. You will never get what you want or need out of life if you are striving towards perfection. Doing your best on a regular basis is tough, but doing everything perfect every time is impossible.

Striving towards perfection is the precursor to failure. Want to ensure you’ll fail? Then try to be perfect. Success is overcoming something, and if you’re perfect, there is nothing to overcome. Here’s a method for drop-kicking perfectionism.

  1. Make your self-talk positive. Self-recrimination and blame have to go. Now. Ditch the words “can’t” and “never” while you’re at it.

  2. Put together a highlight film of your high points. Don’t look for moments in your life when you were “perfect.” Look for moments that brought you the most job, sense of accomplishment and peace.

  3. Commit to a forward action. Or “pull the trigger” as someone once advised me. Even the smallest tap can move a large boulder.

  4. Make your imperfections your assets. Freddy Mercury was famous for his overbite. At one point in his career, he refused to get it fixed surgically altered because he was afraid that it was what made his voice so distinctive. I’m no plastic surgeon, but I’m willing to bet that wasn’t what made him sound so distinct, but he made an imperfection that caused him embarrassment for years into an asset.



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