23 May 2016

It’s not what happens to us that determines our success, but how we respond to it

Epictetus, a Greek philosopher, once said: “It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.”

Every day, we face certain things in life or in business, and some of those things are not in our favor. However, there’s a line that divides the two possible differences in the way we respond to those circumstances. Above that line is where we find ownership, accountability and responsibility. Whereas, below that line is where we find excuses, denial, and blaming things outside of ourselves.

And when something goes wrong, it’s too easy to find ourselves leaning towards south of that line — to start blaming people, making excuses for what’s happening and going into denial. I’m sure you know someone who is exactly like that. But if you try to look within yourself, you’ll realize that we’re all the same, that we all do it. It’s human nature.

But that doesn’t mean it’s a good way to go about your life.

If all you do is whining and complaining or having what I call a “pity party”, you don’t actually get to fix anything or make things better. It’s a cowardly act to point fingers, and what’s even worse is to get stuck on reacting instead of acting. You’ll just end up wasting loads of valuable time and energy that otherwise could have been spent working on the problem.

Remember, when something goes wrong in our life or in our business, the most important question we can ever ask is: “Right, so what are we gonna do about it?”

There will always be bumps on the road; obstacles are part of every endeavor. No one ever said that there’s an easy way to success, so if you have the right mindset, you should be able to get through those difficult times without being caught up in too much negativity.

Part of my job as a coach is to help you develop a habit that makes you choose to respond appropriately to setbacks. It’s called “above the line” behavior. In order to be successful in business or in life as a whole, you need to learn how to take ownership of challenging situations and to focus on what needs to be done instead of wallowing in misery.

I give you my word— the greater percentage of time you spend above that line, the healthier and wealthier you will be. It’s a lifestyle choice.

So let’s work together and spend more time above the line.

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