Seven Steps to recover from a setback

14 May, 2022 - 00:05 0 Views
Seven Steps to recover from a setback

The Herald

Arthur Marara-Point Blank

There are two kinds of people, those who have experienced setbacks, and those who will experience setbacks. 

My choices of topics have been deliberate, as I am consciously aware of the environment that many businesses are operating in.

Covid-19 became a serious game changer since it made its first appearance. 

Many businesses are still recovering from the consequences. Sadly, some will not be able to actually recover from the effects.

Globally, some major brands filed for bankruptcy.  Some of them had been in existence for over a century. 

Other businesses closed branches and shops in other parts of the world completely to cut on their losses. 

If you are still open, you have something to be grateful for. Even in your personal life, you are going to experience some setbacks in life. 

Setbacks are normal and part of life

If you are not experiencing setbacks, it means you are not living. 

Setbacks come in various forms; career, health, financial, dream, relationship and upbringing setbacks.

There are real examples for each of the setbacks above, however for economic reasons I will shelve these for future articles and head straight into the substance of what you need to do to recover from the setback. 

Build a strong foundation beforehand

There are two things that you need to bear in mind. 

First, you have absolutely no control over when, and where you are born.

Secondly, you have no control over when you will die. 

There is something that you have control over; what happens in between. 

Whilst, there is nothing that you can do about your past, you can certainly do something about your future. 

This future however is going to be characterised by setbacks. Recovering from a misfortune begins before the situation even happens. 

You need to know that setbacks will always be there. You are going to fail; you are going to make mistakes in life. This should guide you in having a realistic view to life. 

Don’t deny the setback 

You cannot change what you deny. 

The positive-thinking literature often pushes people towards a direction of denying that certain things have happened or happening. 

I want to tell you that it is very okay for you to experience the negative emotions that often punctuate a setback.

You need it. Denying the setback will not make it go away. Take note of the facts, and acknowledge the feeling, but make it a point not to blame yourself or others for the setback. Always remain in charge. 

This time is critical for you to process the happenings.

 DO Not rush to act, take some time to pause, and reflect. Acting without thinking is the reason for all failure. Hold on to that blunt email or the resignation letter that you may think can solve the disappointment. You regret the choices that you make in a haste. Resist the urge and the temptation to rush. 

Change your mind-set

You are not your setbacks. You are not your mistakes.

Setbacks are actually progress in disguise. 

Some of the important things that you actually learn in life came as a result of some setbacks. 

Growth rarely comes when we are at our comfort, but when we are at our discomfort. 

These challenging experiences stretches you, and places a demand on your potential and gifts.

There is no season that is permanent, even difficulties are not permanent. Nothing is permanent. 

Even your misery is not permanent. 

Connect with others

You need other people. Resist unhealthy solitude in such time. Build on the support of other people. 

This does not mean you can rope in anyone. Be selective as to who you reach out to during this time. 

There are people who will literally bury you instead of actually helping you.

 Do not involve people who will throw a pity party. Surround yourself with people who are objective, positive and focused on solutions, not problems. 

You need people with positive energy, who can energise you and help you come up with better and effective solutions. 


Create a plan that will minimise the impact of the setback and get you back on track. 

You can also ride on the competencies of other people in this exercise.

There are plenty of resources on the internet that can help you go through this rough patch. Gather the information you need and put together a plan. 

Four important points to ponder in interrogation during your strategising; 

What should I stop doing?

What should I do more?

What should I do less?

What should I do differently?


There is no substitute for action. After going through all the paces of grieving, establishing the facts, you need to move forward with your plan, and evaluating progress along the way. 

This process builds up the momentum that you need in life. Take action! 


Do not waste pain and disappointment. Learn from the experiences. 

True learning is bankrupt of judging or blaming.

What you gained and how you can prevent the problem from happening again?

This is a fundamental question to ask yourself during this period.

Keep a learning journal where you record everything that you have learnt from the small and large challenges you encounter on a daily basis. 

These are priceless tools that can remind you of the temporary nature of setbacks, and attest to one more important thing– your perpetual ability to push through them.

Learn what works – (do more of it)

Learn what doesn’t work (avoid doing it, and try something different)

Arthur Marara is a corporate law attorney, keynote speaker, corporate and personal branding speaker commanding the stage with his delightful humour, raw energy, and wealth of life experiences. He is a financial wellness expert and is passionate about addressing the issues of wellness, strategy and personal and professional development. 

Arthur is the author of “Toys for Adults” a thought provoking book on entrepreneurship, and “No one is Coming” a book that seeks to equip leaders to take charge.

Feedback to [email protected] or Visit his website or contact him on +263780055152 for bookings.

Share This:

Sponsored Links