Tobe Brockner

Dealing with Setbacks

**Note: this article is adapted from an ebook that I wrote called "Take Your Life Back: A Practical Guide to Self-Creation". If you would like a free copy of this ebook, please visit here: https://go.tobebrockner.com/get-ebook

I looked down at the scale with disgust. I had gained 2lbs from the day before. I knew why and I was disappointed in myself. It wasn’t really about the 2lbs at all though. Of course my weight was going to fluctuate on a day-to-day basis. The issue was that I had broken from my system and ate several carb-heavy meals that I was now paying for. 

I have already admitted that I am pretty weak as a human being. I’m lazy. I procrastinate. I routinely lie to myself about my own capabilities. I know myself pretty well.

That is why I CANNOT under any circumstances rely on willpower to create my Self. I have to rely on the system, the F.R.A.M.E.work. I know that if I do that I will win.

That being said, you will have to deal with occasional setbacks. Just like me and every other imperfect human on the planet. That’s how it works. The key is to rely on the system to your best ability, work the F.R.A.M.E.work and effectively deal with the setbacks as they come.

Remember, there is no “done” with Self-Creation. It is an on-going, iterative process that you will always be engaged in. If you slip up today, it’s not the end of the world. Get back up, dust yourself off, and keep going.

Here are some tools to help you do that:

Make Sure You Are Scheduling Your Activities

Your schedule is your best friend. If you are diligent about getting your tasks onto your calendar you will be much more likely to stick with it. Think of your calendar as a glass and all your regular daily activities as water. Your Vision Statement tasks are ice cubes.

If you fill your glass up with water and then try to add the ice cubes, what happens? Chaos. Water overflows and you have a mess on your hands.

It makes much more sense to add the ice cubes first and then pour in what water will fit around the ice cubes. In other words, schedule your vision tasks first and then use the EAD Formula to get all your other daily tasks to fit in the space that’s left.

Regularly Attend Responsibility Calls

Of all the advice I could give you, attending a weekly responsibility call consistently would be right up at the top of the list. There is something so powerful about getting together with like-minded peers who are traversing the same path as you.

Showing up week in and week out, knowing that you are going to have to present your past week to the group publicly is the best way I know to stay on track. There are few things worse than showing up to one of those calls without having met your weekly goals. No one likes to lose face like that, so the probability of you actually doing what you committed to doing is very high.

Much higher than if you were to try and go at this alone. 

Connect With Your Vision Statement Often

I try to read my Vision Statement at least twice a week, sometimes more. I don’t always read the whole thing (after all, it’s now about 20 pages long), but will go to sections where I know I am struggling or just need to remind myself why I am doing a particular thing is so important.

I can feel the passion and the sense of urgency in my Vision Statement that my old self created, longing for something better. For a more complete Self. I allow myself to feel the emotion that is pouring out of that document and it lights me up.

I also use it as a way of creating new weekly goals for myself. Sometimes I forget about things I want to do or be and reconnecting with my vision helps me reorient and gives me something new to work on.

For example, one of my Lifestyle visions was to be an accomplished scuba diver. One day I was reading my Vision Statement again and realized that I was finally in a position where I could work on that.

So, I contacted my local dive shop, got registered for the classes, and finally certified. I hadn’t had that much fun in a long while. I love being in the water and exploring the depths. It brings me no small amount of joy.

As a side benefit, I knew that I needed to stay in shape in order to get the most out of diving so it helped keep me on track with my diet and exercise. Diving is not exactly a cheap activity either, so I had to make sure my Business/Career and Wealth categories were on track as well.

All of these things are integrated and overlap one another to create this thing we call Life. Connecting with your vision regularly will help you stay on track towards working towards your true Self.

Make Adjustments Where Needed

Your life is going to evolve and change over time. Your Vision Statement is meant to be a guide towards aiming at something. A better Self. A new Self. But that doesn’t mean that it is a static document set in stone. As I mentioned earlier, it can and should change as your life evolves.

This is what makes this journey so much fun! Because you are never “done” you have an infinite number of ways to create your true Self that will change with the seasons of your life. The biggest thing to remember is to be intentional about where you are going. Your Vision Statement helps create that intentionality.

This means that you inevitably will need to make adjustments along the way to things that aren’t working. That is ok. It doesn’t mean you failed. It just means that you need to hone your tactics a little more, try something new, or try something different.

Approach it like a scientist would approach testing a hypothesis. If they try one thing and it doesn’t prove their hypothesis, they don’t throw up their hands in despair and quit. No, they keep trying other things over and over until they find something that proves their hypothesis.

Your hypothesis is this: I have crafted in my mind’s eye a new Self that I believe I have the potential of becoming and I am going to try to manifest that Self in the following way <insert your Vision Statement here>.

Adjust, change, pivot, do whatever you have to do, but DO NOT GIVE UP. Got it? Good. Get to work.


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Tobe Brockner

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