With the year well underway, some of us are suffering from “resolution remorse.” That’s the awful feeling you get when you break a New Year’s resolution.
I felt it just five days into January, when I broke down and devoured an apple fritter. I had promised myself not to be lured into that sad state of caloric excess, but I caved. Did it feel good when the icing-coated, crunchy-soft dough touched my lips? Absolutely. But that fresh feeling became stale pretty quickly. And that, my friend, is resolution remorse.
But rather than throw in the towel as I might have once done, I made another promise to myself. I vowed that this would be the year I hit the reset button as often as I had to.
We all slip from time to time. We fall off the wagon, break down and make mistakes; it’s part of life. Whether it’s coming up short on a resolution or crumbling in the face of a serious life challenge, failure always seems to walk hand-in-hand with success. But it’s not how many times we get knocked down that matters, it’s how many times we get back up. That’s what counts.
So today, I’m inviting you to join me in hitting the reset button as often as needed this year. Just decide that whatever the issue, you’ll get back up and tackle it head-on with the same tenacity and passion you used in round one.
Hitting the reset button has worked pretty well for some legendary figures:
- Steve Jobs was a college drop-out who was fired from Apple (the company he founded) at age 30. He later returned and the rest is history.
- Steven Spielberg was rejected from the University of Southern California School of Theater, Movies and Television three times. So he attended a different school and received his degree 35 years later.
- Oprah Winfrey was told she was unfit for TV and fired from a Baltimore TV station. Seven years later she found her groove in Chicago and never looked back.
- Thomas Edison found 1,000 ways to not illuminate a room before the light bulb finally went on.
- Michael Jordan was cut from his high-school basketball team. So he decided to become a multi-season NBA champion with the Chicago Bulls and a Hall of Famer instead.
- Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper editor because he “lacked imagination and had no good ideas.” After a number of failed businesses and bankruptcies, it looks like he got things right.
Although we’ve all experienced the joys of success, we can also be pretty hard on ourselves when we fail. Often those feelings of guilt, remorse and stress can become overwhelming.
To avoid being overwhelmed and giving up when you stray from the path, here are three quick strategies that will help you get back on track:
1. What’s happened has happened
Once an event has happened it’s done. It’s over. There’s not much you can do about it, so don’t waste time and energy on what might have been. Learn from the past, but always focus your energy on moving forward.
2. Keep your eyes on the prize
Stay focused on your goal, not your setbacks. Why does it matter if you failed five times, if you eventually hit your target? The satisfaction of reaching your goal will outweigh any setbacks and missteps you may have had along the way. Remind yourself of your goal, write it down, look at it often and visualize success.
3. Never give up
Success is grounded in the ability to persevere. The woulda-coulda-shoulda people of this world fall by the wayside far too early. The good news is they leave an open path for those who choose to continue down the road. There’s a price to pay for success and for failure. Decide which one you want and be prepared to pay the price. Stick-to-itiveness reaps big dividends, so hang in there.
Join me in hitting the reset button as often as necessary this year. Try doing things a bit differently and see how it works for you. By getting right back up after you get knocked down, and kicking setbacks and adversity to the curb with authority, you’ll see results quicker than ever.
More strategies for success:
- The science of keeping your New Year’s resolutions
- Would you like a LATTE with that complaint?
- How to build a high-performance team
- Five keys to employee engagement
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