How to Use Setbacks to Strengthen Belief in Yourself

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How many times have you “failed” at something? Once, twice, ten times? Most of us go through what could be considered failure at some point in our lives. Not succeeding at something absolutely sucks! It would be great if we could leap right to success, but it doesn’t work that way. If we take the right steps, however, a strong sense of self-belief can come from these setbacks.

I remember growing up through elementary and high school and being a star athlete, popular, AND managing to pull off excellent grades. Then, I went to college and failed my finals (just about all of them), TWICE! I was devastated!

But, you know what? It was a huge reality check for me. I had taken my good fortune for granted and I’d somehow stopped making an effort to succeed.

As I pulled myself out of that dark time (and others), I discovered that one of the best tools to help you succeed is failure itself.

How to use setbacks to strengthen your self-belief

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Learn From Your Experience

When things don’t work out, you can use the experience to figure out what went wrong.  Look back at the steps you took and the decisions you made so you can choose a different (and better) path the next time.

Were you not as consistent as you should have been on social media? Did you take on too many clients? Did you focus your efforts on the wrong thing?

Sometimes the missteps will be pretty obvious. Mostly though, you’ll have to dig much deeper.

Whatever conclusion you come to, map out a new plan of action from what you’ve learned.

Avoid The Blame Game

Really be honest about why the setback occurred. It’s not usually someone else’s fault you didn’t succeed so blaming others won’t be helpful.

Not owning the situation will mask the real reasons it happened, and you’ll never move on.

Ultimately, it was your venture or business idea, so take responsibility for that and keep going.

Don’t Dwell on It

Accepting that things didn’t work out is essential, but don’t spend all your time beating yourself up about it.

If you constantly put yourself down when bad things happen, you’ll have a hard time getting back out there. Recognize the misstep, know that stuff happens, and try not be your own worst enemy.

Think about your past successes and achievements. Remember those? You’re still that person who kicked butt then, and you can for sure do it now!

You’re in Good Company

Look around you. There are tons of success stories out there that began from failure. People write about their trials and tribulations in books or record videos about their experiences.

Their experiences can help you avoid the mistakes they made.

Learning about other peoples’ journeys also helps you understand that you’re not alone. When you read about how a successful person overcame obstacles, you can feel better about making your own mistakes.

In other words, if they found success, you can too.


Improve Don’t Repeat

How to use setbacks to strengthen belief in yourself

Finally, if you’re repeating the same mistakes over and over, it’s time to take a tough look at what you’re doing. If you can’t break that cycle, you may want to find a coach or mentor that can help you. Or, surround yourself with like-minded people such as in a niche-specific Facebook group or forum. You could also consider an accountability partner. Sometimes, that extra push can be all that is needed to get you to move past the self-destruct cycle.

We only fail when we stop trying, and true success doesn’t come without some punches to the gut.

EVERYTHING you’ve done so far in your life has prepared you for your success, even though you may not realize it. That seemingly mindless job you had in high school stocking shelves? That job prepared you for a future role as a virtual book-keeper! Think about it. All those “little” jobs, volunteer, and school roles. Even the bad times. You’re being prepared to become a kickass entrepreneur.

So, keep moving forward, taking action, and don’t give up!


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