One of the greatest challenges of my life has been learning to live with disappointment.
To allow disappointed in to my heart, to feel it, to let it take me down. But not to let it stop me.
To not let it keep me from:
The great danger in business is not that we will try and fail. It’s that we stop trying, but sometimes in ways so subtle we don’t even realize that that is what we are doing.
We dim our desire. We get confused about what we really want.
We decide to aim for something reasonable and doable, but not what excites us. (A lot of conventional business and marketing encourages this, pointing its finger at you accusingly, “don’t create a program because you WANT to, offer something you KNOW people will want.” As if what we want to create can’t find a home. As if creating one more program about the same subject that everyone is talking about will sell. More protection.)
We set our mouths in grim, little lines.
We pick safer actions. Ones that keep us from feeling the sting of rejection too quickly or too directly. (Spending lots of time updating your web site, anyone?)
We get distracted. We spend too much time on Facebook or cleaning our desks.
We create detours for ourselves. We say “I need to do THIS, before I can do THAT.”
We get busy but we don’t get around to the simple, scary, risky actions that in our hearts we know will make the difference.
But when we cultivate resilient hearts, it looks different.
We pursue something we love.
We try something new.
We go all in.
And if it flops.
We let it in.
We let it hurt.
We let ourselves feel.
We curl up in a ball and cry and scream.
We take a day or two or five off and binge watch TV and drink tea and go for walks.
And then we come back.
And in some quiet space, we face ourselves. We do a reckoning.
Not a “why am I such an idiot?” self-blaming reckoning.
We use our smarts and our intuition. Our fierce self-compassion.
We ask: what was this?
What can I learn from this?
We don’t throw the experience away. We chew on it, savor it, digest it. We use it to grow strong bones and supple muscles.
And we start over. Again.
What do I want? How do I want to feel?
How do I want to express myself in this world? What do I want to share?
What brings me alive to talk about? To work with people on?
And we choose the next project, the next action, the next effort.
And we love ourselves through that one.