Here is a familiar scenario for all of us: You have an exciting goal in mind, you’ve done your homework, you think you’re amply prepared… and things just don’t work out. You’ve probably had times when you thought you were doing what you were supposed to do, but you were misinformed. You thought you had it all laid out, and it just didn’t work. You burned the midnight oil day after day, and it didn’t help. You couldn’t seem to change the end result.
These are times when you have to be your own best cheerleader. There are two ways to keep yourself encouraged.
Learn from the fact that though you made the best presentation possible, your client wanted it a different way. Be prepared for the letdowns that happen every so often. Know that this lost opportunity just sets you up to take advantage of the next one. Realize that you can make the necessary alterations next time. Make the changes that will make the difference. Study your mistakes, and learn from them. Instead of dwelling on your mistakes, simply acknowledge them. Remind yourself that you’re smarter than your bank account leads you to believe.
Don’t get down on yourself. Don’t beat yourself up. It’s the next opportunity that matters, not the last one. The last one matters only in that you must learn from it, but the next one gives you the opportunity to show that you have learned from your mistakes. You can do it better next time. You just have to practice. Keep trying until you’ve got it down pat.
If you’ve figured out what went wrong last time, then you know how to make it right next time. If you’ve figured out what it was in your presentation that didn’t work, don’t say those same words next time. If you’ve figured out that the reason you didn’t close the deal this time was because you didn’t have all the facts and figures in place, have all the facts and figures in place next time. Don’t beat yourself up for messing up. Pat yourself on the back for figuring it out.
You need to encourage yourself. You need to pump yourself up. You need to be your own cheerleader. Why? Because you can’t wait and hope that someone else will come along and cheer you up. You have to rely on yourself. You have to have faith in yourself and your ability to figure out what works and what doesn’t.
You’ll have to encourage yourself with future successes. When you miss an opportunity, are unprepared for an opportunity or suffer a setback while realizing your goals, you need to encourage yourself by immediately getting back into line.
There’s an old cowboy saying that goes, “Fall off a horse seven times, and you’re a real cowboy.” If you fall off a horse, get right back on. If you fall off track, get right back on. If you fall away from your disciplines, get right back to them. If you fall out of habit, get right back into it.
It might be hard. It might be a bit frightening. But get back on the horse. Keep your resolve alive, active and well. Cheer yourself on to victory.