by Pamina Mullins
There are so many people in my life at the moment (professional and personal) for whom life as they know it has capsized in an instant. They’re suddenly faced with situations they’re totally unprepared for. None of their frames of reference fit any more; all their tried and tested strategies and expectations are suddenly
obsolete; their values and beliefs shaken to the core.
How do you keep your balance when something cataclysmic suddenly
forces you into a new reality?
And why is it so important to keep your balance? Because when you
unconsciously allow yourself to be consumed by the problem, you spiral into
the stress response—and can no longer see the “exit” signs. Even if you see
them, your energies are so scattered and depleted that you’re unable to take
advantage of the opportunities that beckon.
Sudden massive change can be very stressful and disorientating. But inherent in
these supremely challenging experiences is an invitation to zoom out, get your
life back into perspective, adjust your belief frames, assess the situation and
formulate a new strategy to suit a new set of circumstances.
If you can foster this level of objective evaluation and resilience, you can
turn these tipping points into a launching pad for the future.
But sometimes, when it comes to the recipe for “a successful life” we’re a bit like
a dog when you throw a Frisbee for him to catch. He gallops off obediently at full
speed, over, under and around obstacles, leaping like an Olympic athlete into
the air, straining, twisting and lunging in an all out effort to catch it; collapsing in a
panting, heaving heap, tongue hanging out after this heroic performance.
If the game changes and you pretend to throw it but hide it behind your back
instead, he repeats this strategy, but is confused and disorientated (not to
mention exhausted) when there is no Frisbee. Here’s the thing—instinctively he
does what he’s done so many times before—because he’s been conditioned to.
The point is that your measure of a successful life is a totally individual and
Your successes are someone else’s failures—and vice versa. A success in
one situation or at a certain time can be a failure in a different situation or at a
different time. The concept of success is constantly shape shifting.
The good news is that you get to choose how you define it, to suit your needs
at this moment. You get to measure it against your own unique yardstick, and
adjust it as and when necessary. You can get creative!
Life is fascinating, messy, mercurial, unpredictable, unfathomable, joyful,
rewarding and sometimes painful.
There is no one-size-fits-all operating manual. The technological explosion
has multiplied our tribe many times. Expanding it beyond belief and making it
a lot more complex and contradictory. Authority figures of every kind—family,
business, social, political, and spiritual all preach a different gospel of “success”
at any given time. It’s easy to lose sight of who we are or what works for us--
Like a dog chasing a Frisbee, our ability to be resilient is sometimes
stunted by our conditioning.
So how can we equip ourselves for life’s tipping points?
1. Know yourself intimately—what works for you and what doesn’t,
regardless of anyone else’s opinions.
2. Change your priority filters as and when necessary. Life is constantly
evolving—so you need to be too
3. Look beyond the catastrophe to the opportunity
4. Evaluate objectively—don’t allow your emotions to distort or magnify an
5. Value, grow, nurture and reach out to your support team. Don’t try to do
it alone. There are always more people than you think sharing a similar
6. Put your wellbeing first—nurture your mental, emotional and physical
health, so you stay in tip top condition to meet the challenges
7. Embrace change. It’s inevitable. Why waste energy resisting the
8. Foster healthy levels of humility. Be brutally honest with yourself instead of
hiding behind socially acceptable excuses
9. Commit to a life of resilience—start out in a new direction—again and
again if necessary
10.Risk failure—you will get wiser, and more confident each time
11.Admit when a strategy has passed it’s sell-by date, and be willing to learn
a new strategy
12.Re-evaluate and calibrate your goals regularly
13.Celebrate everything you get right—it builds confidence and momentum
14.Life may suck sometimes but you don’t have to let it suck the life out of
you. Look for the opportunities in every situation.
15. Appreciate what you have—it liberates you from the misery of “not
16. Practice staying fluid and flexible—change your perception filters when
17. Don’t let negative feelings suck you into the quick sands of desperation--
read the messages they come to deliver and turn them into positive action
18. Practice seeing things from other people’s perspectives, instead of rigidly
clinging to your own
19. Question the validity of your beliefs and perceptions. Just like computer
programs they need updating from time to time
20. Know that like white water rafting, “the rapids” ultimately give way to calm
Too often when we fall down metaphorically in some area of our lives
we focus on the fall; viewing it as evidence of our inadequacies in every
sphere of life.
What if we focus instead on what we can learn from the fall; refine our strategy,
or choose a different route, or even a different destination?
At times like this if we were to view a graph of our lives in their entirety—career,
finances, health and relationships it would clearly illustrate that nobody makes
equal progress in all areas simultaneously. Maybe right now your relationships
are a source of great joy while your career is in a shambles. Maybe your finances
are in fine shape but your health needs attention.
If we identify and celebrate where we are successful; where we have made
admirable progress, it provides the momentum for getting the areas that are
lagging back on track. Recognizing all our wins raises our sense of self value and
self trust—and this is the place of power.
With our self value and self trust intact our stocks on the cosmic stock
exchange leap—and we can dig ourselves out of the deepest hole.
It is also good to remember that the areas we may be struggling in right now will
one day provide a valuable platform for helping others who are standing at that
tipping point, confused and disorientated. Our triumphs are visual proof that there
is a way out of the maze.
Our willingness to accept and embrace what is allows us to reclaim our power
when we most need it. Rejecting change and clinging desperately to what was
just keeps us stuck and powerless.
When we learn to listen to our own inner compass it frees us from the
shackles of powerlessness.
When we know and trust ourselves we instinctively know when to bend and when
to stand strong; when to lean in and when to let go; when to push through and
when to be still and assess the best way forward; when to speak up and when to
listen. Being resilient makes you mighty beyond measure!
What life changers have you experienced and how have they changed you?
Please add a comment below. If you found this post helpful, please don’t keep it a secret—share it with your
own networks. Let’s continue this conversation. You can also request more
information and/or schedule a free initial Breakthrough Discovery Session.