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Understanding How We React From Challenges Helps Us Throw Off Discouragement

By Steve Beseke, senior vice president, think2perform – Also, take a look at my resiliency e-books at

All of us get discouraged once in's only human. A particular day might not be going well because you had a challenging conversation with your spouse, children, your boss or just that your bio-rhythms are a bit out of sync.

Because of my physical disability (Cerebral Palsy) I have to be very careful that my creaky body does not lead me to falling or otherwise "hurting" myself in some other way. This can become very discouraging if I don't maintain my resilience. In a previous article, I mentioned my inner resiliency voice that has helped me pull through such discouraging life moments - such as smacking my head on a marble floor after a fall in front of work colleagues, or needing stitches after a similar spill many years ago.

While my challenges of walking may be more obvious, all of us must face our own unique discouraging moments - in work and in life - that we need to stand tall and get back in the game. The key in not staying discouraged for me is how I react to those moments. Do I pity myself and become more! Do I want to blame others or retreat into my! Do I dust myself off - whether it is a physical, life or work event - and continue striving for my best...absolutely yes!!! Of course, I may get discouraged once-in-awhile, but I rarely let it consume me where it affects the most important parts of my life - family, friends and believing in myself.

How do you deal with discouraging moments in your life and career? Do you too often let it affect all parts of your day, thus perpetuating the discouragement into something less healthy? I truly hope not. If you do, then other parts of your day don't seem to go as planned, and the discouragement and apprehensiveness will grow.

To minimize such tendencies, I began several years ago to become much more "compartmentalized." If one part of my day did not go particularly well, I'd quite literally shut the door to that compartment for awhile and open another door that I am walking through that day.

I found, of course, it is definitely easier said than done. I'm still not perfect at it, and sometimes a creaky door or two doesn't firmly shut. But having this mindset allows me to have a life/career strategy that is more healthy and resilient for me. What are your strategies to stop dwelling on things sometimes out of your control?

What I've learned, which I suggest you think about, is don't lump all your worries, challenges and discouraging thoughts into one overwhelming compartment, Instead, find ways to break up these moments into smaller, more manageable subsets that you can deal with individually and not as a collective whole.

I have a number of strengths and, of course, a few weaknesses along the way. One of my "learned" strengths is not trying to deal with all of my day's challenges together... I'm not very good at dealing with "floods," and my challenges can group together in a Hurricane Sandy deluge if I don't stick to sorting them out individually.

My advice is don't let discouraging moments overwhelm you. Try to find ways to separate those moments from the other terrific parts of your life. My very dear father died a number of years ago but I kept on - albeit more lonely. I also have been able to bounce back from - what seem like - hundreds of falls in life...

Never feel too discouraged. You bring a unique and marvelous perspective in this world, and you deserve to stay resilient no matter what life holds for you!

Thanks, again, for reading my award-nominated blog. I would feel discouraged without you! Take a look at my e-books at Until next week, my friends... Also, please let me know if you'd like me to write about other aspects of can make the difference!

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