We all experience setbacks in life be it loss of a job or the ending of a relationship, and it can be devastating. But it’s what we do afterwards that really matters. In this blog, I’m going to share how I turned my setbacks into opportunities!
Too often when we experience setbacks in life, we become cautious, fearful, and we focus on what we lost. Instead, I encourage you to look at it as an opportunity in disguise. Perhaps you were not ready for what lied ahead and you now have an opportunity to work on yourself first to prepare for a better future.
I’ve experienced so many setbacks in life that at times I felt like I was cursed. At times I felt as if I killed a priest and a nun in my past life and I was being punished in this life for my past transgression. The key is to not lose faith in your abilities and be open to seeing the opportunity within the perceived curse.
I can definitely relate to this quote. There was a time in my life where I experienced multiple setbacks one after the other that it almost broke me.
Setback Number 1: Occurred when I was working at an international import export company insuring commodities around the world well over $1,000,000.00 it was a great job I got out of college until I was restructured out just as I put a down payment on a house the night before.
Setback Number 2: Struggling to find work for a number of years with very little success.
Setback Number 3: Taking a survival job at call centre and still unable make ends meet.
Setback Number 4: My mother is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and dementia and is now living with us.
Setback Number 5: I’m dealing with depression because of all these setbacks in my life.
Added to the mix, my wife shares with me that she is pregnant with our 2nd child. I’m happy but even more stressed wondering how will we manage another child at this time.
Is it safe to say that I could really use an opportunity right about now?
When you’re caught between a rock and a hard place you have to change your thinking from Impossible to I’m Possible! Often it just takes something small like an apostrophe to change your situation and outlook in life.
To create more opportunities, I started to aggressively network. I have a saying, “who know you refers you.” Within a sort space of time an opportunity came in the form of an interview for a trainer position. It was far more money than what I was making at the call centre.
I jumped at it. I didn’t care if there was 100 or 1000 people applying for the job it was going to be mine. In the end I got the job.
Getting the job as a trainer was not only a catalyst for me to move my family forward financially but a catalyst for me to write my first book, “A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To My Career.” I took all the setbacks I experienced and made it into a fun self-help book to teach people how to effectively get a job and move their careers forward using my 50 practical rules. This book has also given me the opportunity to use it in my workshops and facilitations to help people succeed in moving their careers forward.
When you experience a setback, don’t be afraid to act. We get too caught up on the perfection of creating the ideal environment for an opportunity to be birthed and we fail to act and I’ve been guilty of that. What I have learned is, it is better to try and possibly fail than to not act at all. Trust me when I say this, your inaction will lead to a life of regret.
This reminds me of a quote in the Shakespeare’s play Julius Cesar.
“There is a tide in the affairs of men which taken at the flood, it leads on to fortune. Omitted, all the voyage of their life is bound in shallows and miseries on such a full sea are we now afloat us and we must take the current where is serves or loose our ventures.”
I urge you all to continue to seek opportunities out there because they can lead on you your fortune. I hope this inspires you to keep moving forward on working on your dreams. And to quote my late mother, “Yes you can, and I know you can!”
Keep moving forward and looking upwards!