Lots of people are glad the holidays are behind them.  So many had a wonderful time with family and enjoyed taking a small break from work, while others took a vacation to a tropical location. Then there are those whose holidays were experienced with sadness, anger, loneliness or some other form of negativity.

We tend to get down on ourselves for the mistakes we made, the poor decisions we took, the broken relationships, the lack of progress toward our goals or some of the less desirable results for our efforts.  So, what are our choices? We can blame others, berate ourselves, withdraw from the world, feel sorry for ourselves and be miserable and angry at everyone and everything.

Or we can pick up the pieces.

Acknowledge what went wrong

It starts by looking at everything that did not go as we planned. Write it down.

Bringing it to the surface is the first step to picking up the pieces.

Then you can answer these questions for each item on your list:

  • What was your original intent?
  • What was the result?
  • Why did you get that result?
  • Which part of that result was out of your control?
  • Which part of that result was within your control?

Acknowledge the Emotions

How did each situation make you feel?

List all the emotions (embarrassed, ashamed, stupid, incompetent, angry, afraid, sad, etc.).

It helps to isolate the emotions and direct them to the situation.  For example: “When XX occurred, I felt ashamed of my decision or my result” versus saying, “I am ashamed of myself all the time.” Bringing your emotions to the surface is a necessary step – acknowledge how you feel. Don’t bury your emotions because they will become a barrier to moving on.

Trust that the intensity of your emotion will subside over time.

Moving Forward

I do believe that we are presented with certain circumstances for a reason. I also believe that we will continue to be presented with the same circumstance repeatedly over time, until we have learned how to address it properly and overcome it once and for all.

Believe in yourself. Believe that you can pick up the pieces and move on.

This is a great video – take a look – it shows some famous failures that may surprise you!

For each situation – ask yourself:

  • If you could do it again, what would you do differently?
  • What did you learn from each experience?
  • What is the positive in each situation?
  • Isolate the emotion to the situation and not about yourself in general.
  • Don’t judge yourself – give yourself permission to fail.
  • Set some small steps for yourself – that you know you can accomplish.

You’ve looked back, you’ve done your analysis.

Now it’s time to look forward and keep looking forward.

When you start getting down on yourself, change the message you are telling yourself.

Replace the negative words with positive attributes.

Track your progress – perhaps in a journal on a weekly basis.

You would be surprised at how well you have done!

Here’s to a new chapter – 2017!