You know how sometimes it feels like everything is going right for you and then other times it feels like everything that could go wrong does?
Life doesn’t always go as planned. It takes all kinds of unexpected twists, turns and bumps.
I have been on both sides of this at different points of my life as I’m sure many of you have too.
- Maybe it was a job you wanted that you didn’t get.
- Maybe you got ghosted by someone you liked.
- Maybe a new business venture didn’t go well.
- Maybe you got dumped.
- Maybe you got fired.
- Maybe a colleague stabbed you in the back.
- Maybe a friend or relative turned her back on you or hurt you in a way that you can’t overlook.
- Maybe you put an offer in on a house and it wasn’t accepted.
- Maybe you’re trying to get pregnant and it’s not happening.
Whatever it is, you don’t always get what you want. But there is a silver lining in this.
- Perhaps you’re being protected from something.
- Perhaps life has something better for you.
- Perhaps that was not your door to open.
I know there are times it seems like life is knocking you down over and over. Trust me, I have been there not too long ago.
My string of misfortunes included my significant other suddenly dumping me to date one of our mutual friends – I was shocked and heartbroken. I lost my job as a result of the depression I fell into, two close friends betrayed me and spread malicious lies about me, my dog died and oh there was a global pandemic too. It felt that everything that could go wrong did.
But the truth was my relationship wasn’t that great – my ex was a controlling and insecure jerk, my job was unfulfilling, my ex friends hadn’t had my best interests at heart for a long time before they betrayed me and my dog was suffering from health issues.
My life looked great from the outside (and on social media) but it was far from perfect. I was unhappy personally and professionally, and instead of doing something about it and taking action, I let things happen to me.
Now of course I can’t change the behavior of others – like my ex lining up his next relationship while he was living with me, but I can change my reaction to other’s actions. It took me a long time to realize that.
It also took me a long time to realize that other people’s opinions about me are just that – opinions. And that no matter what life throws at me, I have a choice in how I react and deal with it.
You can wallow in the misfortunes you’ve been dealt or you can dust yourself off, get back up and try again until you get to where you want to be.
You can use your experiences – the good, the bad and the ugly – to create a better life for yourself. Until you believe that you deserve that, you will be stuck.
You have the power to shift your mindset from a victim mentality to a place of power. Use everything that has happened to you as a learning experience to forge ahead.
Try reframing past experiences and hardships as lessons learned. Recognize that you are in control of your life. Take positive steps toward what you want – even if you have to tip toe at first. I did it (during a pandemic) and it was not easy. I practiced gratitude. I forced myself to see the good in my life when everything seemed so bleak. I steered myself in a new direction, paved a new path and took control over my life, who I allowed in it and what I wanted. I had to look for new opportunities, believe in myself while also silencing my inner critic.
Sometimes you have to step back in order to make a huge stride forward.
I learned how to build resilience so I could better withstand the curveballs life throws my way.
Oprah once said, “There is no such thing as failure; failure is just life trying to move us in another direction.” When nothing goes right, it’s important to remember, this happens to everyone, even the most successful people you can think of.
Here are a few other things I did to gain confidence and balance in my life during this tough time:
- I exercised (best thing I did was getting a Peloton)
- I started to meditate
- I wrote a lot on this blog
- I cooked and baked a lot
- I reconnected with old friends
- I cleaned house on friends and acquaintances who were no longer good for me
- I networked and took positive steps to bums my business
- I moved out of my temporary apartment and into a home I love
- I got another dog – I highly recommend getting a puppy to cure all problems
- I spent time out of NYC in nature to clear my head
- I researched ways I could help others who had been through similar situations
- I volunteered to causes important to me
- I spent time with my family
- I hit the reset button on my life – re-evaluating everything
- I surrounded myself with positive people who had my back. Sometimes you need to gain perspective from those who genuinely back you and lift you up. We all need our “cheerleaders” on the sidelines.
The silver lining to being knocked down is that when you get back up, you are wiser, stronger, kinder and a better version of you. It makes you appreciate what you have much more. It makes you humbler. I needed the rug to be pulled under me in every aspect of my life in order to make a major change.
It is never too late to start over. It is never too late to rebuild your life. Take baby steps. And start today. Remember this sort of stuff happens to everyone at some point.
I have been there, and I know how hard it is, but I also know that each of us can find the strength within ourselves to rebuild and emerge from a series of negative events and a low period with a life that is even better then you could have imagined.
Stay the course. Things will change. And remember that nothing goes on forever.