Life is a funny old thing, it twists and turns and rarely follows the path you thought it would. Managing the unexpected and staying positive can be so difficult when you feel like you have little control over what will happen next.
The last few weeks have been challenging for me as I’ve struggled to keep my emotions in check. If you read this post you will know that I have been getting close to buying retail space. It has taken a long time to reach the point where the project is finally within reach and the contracts are ready to be signed but we just we got some rather dull and worse than expected news that could bring everything to a halt. My default position is to go nuclear for a bit – I’m human after all – and then regroup in order to find solutions.
Being proactive when life throws you a curve ball is one of the most valuable lessons I have learnt in life. I haven’t quite got it down but I’m getting there and I think it means I might be a grown up after all!
Useful steps for dealing with a curve ball
Focus on your goal – don’t lose sight of what you want to achieve. Keeping your eyes on the prize will help to keep going in times of adversity, for me the ‘prize’ is owning my own business. In the midst of my despair I had to keep reminding myself of my end goal, being clear and holding on to that helped me to come up with a few things that I could do to help move things along and also to consider a Plan B.
Be flexible with your vision – you have to accept that things may not turn out quite the way you planned but there is always more than one way to do things so be prepared to adapt to a change in circumstances. Hold on to your goal and keep going, persistence is key.
Take positive action – wallowing in despair and self-pity won’t get you anywhere, do something constructive and you will feel much better. Taking action will help to combat feelings of helplessness and frustration and can be as simple as making a couple of phone calls or compiling a list of next steps.
Take practical steps that will improve your situation
Surround yourself with the right people – ‘a problem shared is a problem halved’ as they say and it can be productive and uplifting to share the difficulties you are experiencing with others. Seek out the people in your life who are dynamic and ready to listen and help you out of a hole. Learning to embrace challenges takes time and a conscious effort to remain positive, I am very fortunate to be married to natural born problem solver which helps enormously. If you don’t have one in your life (and I bet you do) then a life coach might be worth considering. Also don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it!
Look on the bright side – a cliché but true. There is something positive even in the worst situations, there is always something to learn. You just have to look for it, hold on to it and swear that you’ll bounce back! My takeaway from the situation I’m currently in is that I still want to own my own business and if it can’t happen right now in the way I planned then I’ll find another way to do it. I’m considering an online alternative and I know a hell of a lot about writing business plans and lease agreements than I did before!
Did this post resonate with you? What do you do when life throws you a curve ball?
PS: Wine and chocolate are both valid answers!