No template or checklist exists for moving beyond a crucible experience. The mixture of emotions, actions and mindset perspectives needed to overcome setbacks and failures is as unique from person to person as the nature of the setbacks and failures themselves.
It was moment seen by tens of millions of people across the globe thanks to a viral video: Heather Kampf falling during the final lap of an 800-meter race in college, then springing to her feet to not just catch her competition, but win. Yet Kampf cautions those amazed by her triumph to take a deeper message away from her 2008 feat than “Never give up.”
Katie Foulkes had to harness resilience as a member of Australia’s Olympic rowing team in 2004. After one of her teammates stopped rowing during the race, the outrage that erupted (the country’s prime minister called the team “UnAustralian”) rocked her to her core.
Life can be confusing. We are trying to figure out who we are and the direction we should go. Get a job, buy a house, have a family. So many things to do. So many obligations. So many expectations. Who has the time to figure out — still less, follow — your own vision?
Benjamin Franklin once said it takes many good deeds to build a good reputation and only one bad one to lose it. Jennifer Cunningham has learned and teaches others that you have to keep your eyes on the values that matter to you as you look to bounce back from a crucible that leaves you feeling defeated and humiliated.
You can’t reverse great loss any more than you can undo failure and setback, but you can move beyond every crucible you face with your heart full and your head held high. Alison Pena has moved past losing her husband to cancer to lead a full and rewarding life rooted in identifying and embracing the blessings still available to her.
Do you have a good handle on the values that guide your life and work? The character traits you admire in others and try to manifest yourself?