You have to just close your eyes and curse

Seriously. Sometimes you just feel defeated. If that’s the case, you need to close your eyes and curse so you can conquer defeat. This state of being is more than just a simple passage of time. It’s a feeling that takes the wind out of you, leaves you feeling a little forlorn for a while, and, worst, susceptible to the downward spiral thinking. This is what most of us refer to as the Shit Hit The Fan (SHTF) moments.

Let me back this up a second and tell you what happened. 

As you know, we were making an e-course on metacognition. Things were going great. Rachel and I finished the content, I was ready to upload it, and WHAM. The store doesn’t work. I can’t even test a student because I can’t “purchase” the class in order to see how it looks to them. So, here I am with content sitting here in my computer, but not on the web, and certainly not enriching anyone’s life as of yet.

And the worst part about all this is, all we need to do is purchase an SSL certificate and change hosts to get it back and running again. Which means money and time waiting. So. Much. Red. Tape.

Conquer defeat with cake.

Exercise? Cake? It’s all the same, right?

Now that you know the background of this rant, let’s continue on. 

We all deal with stress differently, and how you deal with stress will help you conquer defeat uniquely as well. Let’s face it, the generic advice lists don’t always help because you can’t always stop dwelling on the problem and getting up and trying again can be just as harrowing if the problem was bad enough. Trust me, I’ve been through enough drama to last several lifetimes due to my socioeconomic status, my political beliefs, lack of support for my business endeavours (not my significant other or colleagues, but other family that just doesn’t get it). When the shit hits the fan, it splatters. I don’t care what you have goin’ on in the background of life, that’s just the way it is.

So this is what you do:

You’re going to break the cycle of lethargy or self-defeating thoughts and actions. This is a method I proudly stole and adapted from Feeling Good by David D. Burns, a book my former psychologist told me would help me adjust after I left the military. (It does — and can be adapted to just about anything.) Check out this old school scan of the cycle, page 87 of the book.

Lethargy Cycle

If you’re like 99% of the people I know, as soon as the SHTF, you start to panic a little. What do you do? How do you take care of it? What’s the next logical step? And then, something else pops up and it’s a downward slide from there. Eventually, you end up in Lethargy-burg fuelled by the Lethargy Cycle, even if only for a day.

Phase 1: Get some distance. You’ve heard about the 10-thousand foot view, right? I don’t mean Tara Gentile’s outstanding programme that she restructured, retired, and renamed, but the concept of looking at the overview of a situation in order to see the big picture of what really matters. When you start with this step to conquer defeat, you can really get an idea of what matters and what doesn’t.

In this phase you take a few — dozen — steps back and look at the overview of your company, dreams, and goals. Then, you circle in on what’s really important. That one thing that will help you attain whatever your version of success is. Don’t rehash the failure, just walk away and gain focus on what really matters.

Phase 2: Redefine the problems. With this new perspective of what the goal is and what really matters at this time, redefine the current needs and problems. What is it you really need to focus on? Sometimes it’s the thing that failed, sometimes you realise you were so off base that you can just scrap the project and walk away.

In my case above, we are transitioning more to online so we can offer lower priced things for people that need them. Clearly we can’t do that without a store. So, my focus then becomes how to fix the store — or which store to move to if it can’t be fixed within our budget.

When you have that, you have something you can truly work with. You have a well defined problem and you can see the forest for the trees instead of the path of frustration.

Phase 3: Get your ass up and try again.

Let John Lee Dumas tell you about it, not me.