A Setback Is An Opportunity In Disguise

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A Setback Is An Opportunity In Disguise

Setbacks are a fact of life. If you’re not planning for them, then you’re not thinking realistically about where you’re going.

A sure way to handle any setback, is to to accept that they happen, as well as to let them happen. While this might seem to be ridiculous or even dangerous advice, the fact remains that setbacks are how we learn, or at least how we should be learning. As odd as it may seem, when you allow setbacks to occur, you prevent future setbacks by learning to avoid them.

Think about the last time you learned any new skill. Better yet, think about learning how to ride a bike, or ski or skate. The first time you attempted any of these things you were awful at it. In fact, you were probably awful at any of them for quite some time. You were also very likely afraid, not only before and during your initial attempt, but also before and during each subsequent attempt, again for quite some time. You probably fell down, a lot. You also probably hurt yourself, perhaps seriously. If you think back on it honestly, learning any or all of these new skills was, in the beginning, a series of setbacks.

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Then, probably quite suddenly, something unexpected happened. You started to learn the skill. Perhaps in an instant, you went from being stumbling, awkward and injury prone to being graceful and swift. It’s likely you laughed or smiled. It probable that you felt exhilarated. It’s certain that you succeeded.

This process of going from a series of setbacks to a moment of success is a perfect example of how any setback is actually an opportunity to succeed. If you had let your fear, awkwardness, embarrassment or injuries stop you back when you were learning how to ride a bike, you would have given up on the success you ultimately did achieve. Instead, what you did was persevere. You learned from the mistakes you made and you became more skillful at avoiding those same mistakes. You learned to treat your setbacks as opportunities to succeed.

If you bring that same mindset to any adversity you currently face, you will continue your record of success. Every experience, new or familiar, comes with the potential for error. When you see that the mistakes you make are actually signposts on the road to success, you become unstoppable.

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