What do you do when bad news lands at your door? When you face failure, deal with disappointment, or receive less than flattering feedback? Do you feel hurt? Paralyzed with fear? Do you turn away, recoil from the situation? Do you deny the issue and your part in it? Does your mood become sullen and sour, or angry and aggressive?
In life, stuff happens – stuff we want and stuff we don’t want. How we deal with the stuff makes all the difference. If you look at bad situations as catalysts for needed change rather than catastrophe, your constructive thoughts, emotions and responses will lead to more positive outcomes.
No matter how many times you hear that embracing failure will lead to personal growth, it’s hard to stomach – especially in the throes of emotional angst. But it’s not the negative feedback that determines success or failure. It’s the way you handle bad news that can make or break your career, reputation and ability to rebound in the future. Emotional intelligence and mental resilience are rooted in one’s ability to face the bad, overcome it and be better for it in the end.
Look for the good – the life lesson, the positive aspect, the hidden benefit – and the grain of truth in the message, even when it’s upsetting, painful, embarrassing, disappointing, or hard to face. For me, there’s value in every experience, even those I would prefer avoiding.
Mine the details of your life for the good and the grain of truth every situation offers. It’s all fodder for greater self-awareness and growth.
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