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Healthy Ways of Coping with Setbacks

Updated: Feb 23, 2022

Setbacks are unfortunately a part of life. Many of us are dealing with setbacks with our new year's resolutions and goals. Learning ways to cope with your setbacks will help benefit your mental health as well as turning setbacks into opportunities to grow and develop.

1. Acknowledge your setback/failure - Remember, everyone has setbacks and failures, it’s part of life. If you don’t acknowledge it, you can’t change and transform from it. Every time we go through a major setback, we change. We grow stronger, smarter and can become better for it. We need to deal with setbacks because we can’t change the past, we need to go forward, and we can be even better on the other side.

2. Stay away from the blame game – instead of staying stuck on blaming yourself or others, which only causes more anger and frustration, work on taking action and moving forward. If you're blaming yourself or others, forgiveness is a healthy option.

3. Be patient – we need to grieve and heal through our setbacks. When we act out impulsivity, we tend to make decisions based on fear.

4. Step outside of your comfort zone – sometimes just sharing your story can be stepping outside your comfort zone but can help many. It shows vulnerability and bravery when we share our story. To embrace change, ask yourself how you can challenge yourself daily?

5. You’re not a victim – we only stay a victim if we don’t act and blame others. When we decide to be proactive and move forward, we become survivors.

6. Don’t Get Catastrophic – yes you are going through a tough time, but it doesn’t mean that your whole world is falling apart. Look at all areas of your life and remind yourself what is working? What you are grateful for?

7. Look for the gold at the end of the rainbow – find the good in a bad situation. Sometimes the bad is the lesson, the changes it causes, the self-awareness, the growth, etc. Look at the situation objectively. After the initial shock has worn off then re-evaluate Is it really that bad? Sometimes it is but sometimes it's not. Most problems are fixable.

8. Take care of yourself – we know there is a mind-body connection. If you’re going through an emotionally tough time, it still affects us physically. Are your basic needs met? Are your emotional needs met? Make yourself a priority.

9. Take some time to feel the pain – setbacks and failures can be very painful, and we need to feel our emotions. When we feel the emotions, we can heal and make better choices.

10. Free write – get all your emotions out on paper. Don’t judge or worry about spelling or grammar.

11. Try again if possible - Failure= learning. You can try again with more knowledge and experience. Failure is just one step in a journey. Perseverance is a great skill to have.

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