Think Well; Think Better; Think Best

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Are you struggling for a victory, failure occurring again again?
Wow, it’s Okay. Yes really it’s okay.

Oftentimes things go OK or even better than that.
But on some days they don’t.
You make a mistake, have setback or you simply fail. It’s no fun. But you can’t avoid it either unless you avoid doing anything at all.
So what’s needed is a smart and self-kind way to handle such situations instead of letting them lead to vicious self-beatings and to them dragging you down into negativity for the day or month.
This week I’d like to share 9 habits that’ve helped me with that. I hope they will be useful for you too.

1. First, just accept how you feel.
When you’ve just failed it will most likely hurt. Sometimes a bit. Sometimes a lot.
That’s OK. Don’t try to push it away by distracting yourself or by trying to push the responsibility onto the rest of the world (if you deep down know that this one’s on you partly or fully). And don’t try to paint it over with a smile.
I’ve found that it works better to not let yourself be lead away by those options or impulses.
But to just be with what I’m thinking and feeling. To try to accept it, to let it in and to hurt for a while instead of trying to reject it all and to keep it away.
Because when you let it in and accept it then it will go faster and in the long run be less painful to process what has happened.
If you reject how you really feel then those emotions will pop up at unexpected times later on and can make you moody, pessimistic, angry or sad.

2. Remember: you’re not a failure just because you had a setback.
When you’ve had a setback it’s very easy to start thinking that you will always keep failing in this area of your life. It’s easy to start thinking that YOU are indeed a failure.
Don’t fall for such a destructive and sometimes seductive self-fulfilling prophecy.
Instead, remind yourself that:
Just because you failed today or yesterday doesn’t mean that you’ll fail the next time.
The truth is that this won’t last for the rest of your life if you keep moving forward, if you take action and you keep learning and it doesn’t label you as some kind of failure (except if you decide to create that label in your own head).
Seeing what’s negative as a temporary thing instead of something permanent is an essential key to an optimistic attitude and to keep going forward in life.

3. Be constructive and learn from this situation.
See it more as valuable feedback and something you can use to improve rather than only a big blow and setback.
I’ve found that the simplest and most helpful way to do that is to ask myself better questions (instead of the common ones that send you off into a negative spiral).
The important thing is to start thinking about the situation from this perspective and to be constructive about things instead of getting stuck in denial or negativity and apathy.

4. Remind yourself: anyone who wants to do things of value in life will fail.
We often mostly just hear about people’s successes. But the path to those milestones tends to have many setbacks. The story of someone’s success may seem only bright and fast-moving in what’s told in the media or we see in our minds.
But the reality – and the useful way to approach setbacks – is most often more like this quote by Michael Jordan:
“I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

5. Let it out into the light.
Another powerful way to handle the emotional fallout and the thoughts that come from a failure is to not keep it all bottled up inside.
But to let it out into the light by talking it over with someone close to you.
By venting about it while the other person just listens you can sort things out for yourself, help yourself to accept what happened instead of pushing it away and release that inner pressure.
By having a conversation about the situation you can see it from another perspective and through someone else’s eyes. This person can help you to ground yourself in reality again, to encourage and to perhaps even to find a way forward.

6. Find inspiration and support from your world.
A conversation with someone close to you can be very helpful.
Another thing you can do is to learn from those who’ve gone where you want to go. Read about how they handled setbacks and low-points before or during their success in books, on websites or online forums.
Or you can simply tap into the enthusiasm or motivation of someone else by listening to a podcast or audio book for maybe 30-60 minutes. This may not be specifically about your current challenge but can help you to shift your mood and mindset back towards optimism again.

7. Move forward again, don’t get stuck in mulling this situation over for too long.
Processing the situation and accepting it is essential.
But I know from experience that it’s also easy to get stuck in the same thoughts going around and around for week or a month.
The habit that has helped me with this trap is to take what I learn from questions like the ones I shared in tip #3 and to make a small rough plan for how I want to move forward from here.
So I take some time to sit down and write that one out.

8. Take action on that plan right away after you’ve drawn it up.
The plan you come up with will just be a start. You can course-correct later on, along the way.
So you don’t have to make it perfect. Trying to do that can sometimes just be a way to procrastinate because you fear failing again or because it is hard to start moving after this rough and disorienting thing that happened to you.
Split your start of a plan up into small steps and then take action on just one of them.
If you still have a hard time to get going then go for a very small step, just 1-5 minutes of action forward. The important thing is to get started and moving forward again so make that easy on yourself.

9. Improve your self-esteem.
A last thing that has helped me in general to handle setbacks is t improve my self-esteem .
By doing so failures don’t become something that so easily drags me down and I recover more quickly from them.

It also makes it easier to see what happened with more clarity and to take responsibility when I am responsible but also to see when someone else is partly responsible or when I just had bad luck that I could honestly not have predicted. And that helps me to not think that everything that goes wrong in my life is 100% my fault.
But how do you improve your self-esteem?

A good start would be to use much of what you find in this article. Like remembering that YOU are not a failure, that everyone have setbacks, to be constructive in the face of adversity and so on.

By doing these things over and over and making them habits your self-esteem improves.
And over time a smaller setback may just bounce off of you and a larger one will not be the same blow as it used to and the shock and climb back up from what happened becomes easier and not something that is as paralyzing anymore.

-Prasannapugazh

Give Up! If you wanna Succeed

Success means something different to every person: like beauty, it exists in the eye of the beholder.  It is your responsibility to determine what success means for you, and how you go about breeding success in your life.

Despite this, there are definitely hindrances to success. These drawbacks are ubiquitous in their ability to deter your success. But don’t fret because if you seek success, and you fear your actions are blocking your desire for success, you have the power and control to overcome the following obstacles.

1. Making Excuses

Stop blaming other people for why you don’t get what you want. Stop refusing to accept responsibility for your mistakes. You make your own choices and you make your own mistakes.In general, stop justifying your poor choices and stop attributing your lack of success to things outside of your control. Successful people don’t do this.

You are going to err. You are going to fail. When this inevitably occurs look within, in a non-judgmental manner, and figure out what you can do better next time. Don’t waste time looking externally by creating excuses for why you didn’t achieve success.

2. Focusing on the Negatives

Yes, there are negative circumstances in life that you have no control over. There are also plenty of positive experiences in your life. I am willing to bet you have more positives in your life than negatives. You are capable of living with a positive perspective. If you want to cultivate success in your life than you need to concentrate on all the good. You shouldn’t disregard the negative, but you don’t have to give it so much of your attention. Otherwise you are never going to be satisfied because you are so focused on the unfavorable conditions of your life. Even if you reach a level of ostensible success, your continued focus on the negatives will prevent you from relishing your accomplishments.

3. Fearing Failure

As I previously stated, YOU ARE GOING TO FAIL! There is no reason to fear it. Rather, you should embrace it. Learn from it, and ultimately improve from it.

When you are successful you know you are always trying your best. When you fail it is not a reflection of you as a person; you are not a flawed individual. View failure as an opportunity to grow, not as something to be feared.

4. Looking for the Easy Way

I want to preface by stating that attaining success isn’t supposed to be an improbable venture where you have to overcome a certain amount of adversity and hardship. I am opining that successful people don’t look for the easy way through life.

Merely strolling through life on cruise control is not the blueprint for success. You need to challenge yourself at times. Push yourself and stretch your limits. Aim to reach your maximum potential, and then go beyond that. That is a success in itself.

5. Beating Yourself Up

You wouldn’t ever beat yourself up physically so why would you do it emotionally and mentally? Learning how to skillfully deal with your thoughts and emotions when you are facing adverse situations is crucial to being successful.

Get upset over things. Express your emotions in an appropriate manner. Be unhappy from time to time. It is going to happen. But don’t ruminate over unpleasant memories and beat yourself up over things that already occurred. Too much time and energy spent on this diverts your attention away from more important endeavors like progressing toward your goals.

6. Being Ungrateful

The best way to establish more contentment in your life is to be more grateful. If you want to push away happiness, joy, and bliss than be ungrateful. Gratitude breeds happiness but it also breeds success. If you are grateful for your life and everything that comprises it you are going to have a less complicated time attaining wealth and accomplishing your goals.

I don’t just mean financial wealth because wealth includes all kinds of valuables. I am not proposing that all financially wealthy people are grateful, and therefore, successful, or that all financially poor people are ungrateful, and therefore unsuccessful.

Being ungrateful is not congruent with getting ahead in life. If you crave success than observe everything you are grateful for. Your gratitude will serve as a compass for your life. It will guide your decision-making, and lead you to success.

7. Concentrating Solely on Your Needs

Hopefully this goes without saying but focusing only on yourself is not going to help you attain success. You could be the wealthiest person on the planet, and it is apparent that you are extremely successful. If you accrued your wealth by taking advantage of people, or by being selfish and egotistical, you are not successful in my book. You probably wouldn’t be very happy either. The best way to succeed in life is by helping someone else!

8. Getting Distracted

You were going to start your book but…You were going to launch your dream business idea but…You were going to travel through Asia but…
I get it. Things come up. Life takes you on a different course. It happens sometimes. But don’t allow yourself to become distracted from realizing your dreams. When distractions obstruct you from your passions than you are moving further and further away from claiming your ultimate successes.

This starts with your daily life. It is fun and often necessary to log onto Facebook and check emails, but don’t allow the modern technological age to prevent you from the work that needs to be finished today. Success is based on working toward your goals while not letting disruptions hinder that.

9. Living Aimlessly

It is your responsibility to ascertain your life goals and objectives. Being successful means you are fulfilling your life’s purpose every day.
Whether your purpose is super ambitious such as solving world hunger or more feasible like being happy, doesn’t matter. The point is that you are aiming to be the best you can be. Steadily wandering through life without any ambitions or without contributing anything to society is not what successful people do.

10. Giving Up

When you face an improbable obstacle in life how do you respond? Do you give up, or do you keep pressing on? Successful people don’t give up. They commit themselves to reaching their final destination. They may not ever get there, but they don’t allow impediments to prevent them from trying. This means continuing on despite failures and disappointments.

Success encompasses a lot of different arenas. What works for financial success may not translate into relationship success. Being successful as an athlete doesn’t necessarily make you successful as a student as well. There are varying degrees of success depending on what situation you are in.

Regardless, the fundamental backbone of success is trying your best. If you put forth your best effort, without harming others in the process, than you are a successful person. This can apply to work, family, friends, relationships, hobbies, etc. As the late great John Wooden said, “Success is peace of mind which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best you are capable of becoming.” I think that sums it up beautifully.

Set a goal for yourself

“Time is limited. If I can make good use of it, I’ll be much more successful. So I’m going to be more productive.”