a black book sitting on a table with a heart bookmark in the corner

Setbacks and Disappointments- The crazy chapter

G’day my friends! I know I keep saying this but where on earth has this week gone!? I swear it will be Christmas in no time! Can’t say I am complaining about that! We are only 2 days from it being officially Winter here in Australia and I can already say I am very much looking forward to warmer days…

Anyway, with the end of the week comes a new blog post!!

These last few weeks for me have been crazy! I have taken a lot of steps to change a few things in my life and to expand my horizons. I could also say more specifically it has been more like 12 months of breakthroughs, setbacks and disappointments.

That is exactly what I want to chat about today! For a lot of people, setbacks and disappointments feel like they never end and it feels like the world is ending and you aren’t in control anymore. Sound familiar? If not then are you actually human?

Setbacks and Disappointments are part of the Journey

After my falling out of car accident. I am in a black dress with a large bandage around by head. My hair is sticking out at all angles. I am slightly smiling and laying on a white pillow.
Now this was a long journey to recovery after several setbacks!

Like you, I am not a stranger to setbacks and disappointments.

Being disabled, you sort of become accustomed to the constant feeling that things are going against you. From surgery, rehab, injury, failed job applications and interviews, relationships pretty much every direction you feel setback or dissapointed.

However, that happens to everyone regardless of the hardware an individual has.

What is different from person to person isn’t the amount of setbacks but how people decide to see them. I find people have two options; either view it as a catastrophe or something that is designed to grow and challenge you. I know that is easier said than done depending on the disappointment or setback. However, there are some super humans out there who look like they could win a high stakes game of Poker when it comes to how they handle their setbacks. Like Inky Johnson. I have left a link to his Facebook account below.

For me I used to, and still sometimes do, view setbacks and disappointments as world ending. I couldn’t see past them and I started to become bitter and resentful of everyone around me.

After a lot of work on myself, I have started to try and view things from a different angle. When I can and whenever I feel like things are going against my vision, I try my hardest to view things as a way to grow. I know that sounds very fru fru and believe me I say that too.

Why are setbacks and disappointments a good thing?

my first round of setbacks and disappointments. I am in a purple checked shirt with my hair in two pony-tales. I am standing holding a walker on carpet. I am smiling at the camera
this pic again?! I know but this is the hardest setback I have faced yet.

You may be thinking why on earth do I have a different spin on my setback and dissappoinments. For me personally, more often or not I look back at them with gratitude. In every journey of setbacks and disappointments I have found out more about myself, my capabilities and discover a new layer of Grit I didn’t know I had.

My setbacks and disappointments are pretty broad. I have had surgeries that require rehab which put a stop to my education. I had to play catch-up in between rehab and check-ups, and just as I was making progress, I would be setback again one way or another.

I failed subjects at Uni, which stuffed up my enrollment pattern and ultimately delaying my freedom, I mean graduation. However, it taught me the art of needing to study harder, change up my note taking methods and it enabled me to get a bit older before graduating. I am grateful the fails happened because I learnt more about myself because of that F than if I had passed.

Later on in life, I finally landed my first paid job and I was super excited. I thought that I was finally being accepted after applying for jobs so many times and being rejected. After only about a month in, I fell out of the car and hit my head on the concrete resulting in stitches, a jarred neck and one good concussion which kept me away from work for three weeks.

When I got back to work I almost had to start back at square one. I also had Uni work to catch up on. It wasn’t a breeze but I realised that the accident gave me the time to continue working on some self development mentally which enabled me to get through the next part of my journey.

Being disabled I am also no stranger to injuries. I have pulled muscles more times than I can count, and my body sometimes just doesn’t want to cooperate with me. When I did my 5km walk, the preparation was brutal and I had numerous setbacks which made me question my ability to complete it. However, with a little bit of perseverance and some trigger pointing of my feet, I managed to complete it still standing

This week for example was another week of  setbacks and disappointments. If you follow me on my social media pages, you will know I pulled my groin last weekend getting out of a chair. Yes I am a clutz. I was so worried that I would be not able to go horse riding on the Saturday. After my physio appointment, my amazing physio told me what I needed to do to ensure I could ride. That meant no stretching my adductor, lots of heat and 3 rounds of activation exercises each night. I had learnt from my last set of setbacks from not doing rehab that not doing anything wasn’t going to work.

So I got stuck in and found myself a heat pack in the cupboard, had numerous hot baths and showers and stayed up until 11pm each night getting my exercises done. The work paid off and I was able to ride without much discomfort. Did the ride go according to plan though? No. I was confusing my horse with what I wanted from her and she got moody. However, that just taught me I need to do a lot more reasarch and watch a lot more riding videos so I can be clearer next week. No harm done.

What I am trying to say is each time I have uncovered a setback or disappointment I have learnt more about myself and it has placed me on a better path than I could have imagined.

Do not under any circumstances do this!

black and white photo of me and my horse. I am standing in front of her scratching her face and talking to her. the side of her can be seen. I am talking to her and appologising for my errors, saying it wasn't her fault and we will get better.
I never blamed my horse for a difficult ride when she didn’t cooperate. It was my fault and my job to get better at directing her.

When people say that I am so resilient and I face my setbacks and disappointments head on, there is one thing I do not do anymore.

That is I never ever blame anyone for my circumstances. It was all too easy to blame my parents or even blame God when I was young for my disability. The three beings that I held so dear put me on this earth to endure so much pain. What that did to me is it turned me into a grumpy and bitter young girl who sat on her backside all day being mad at the world. That did no one any favours. The only thing it did was make me resentful of my parents. That was no way to live.

In so many circumstances, the hardest thing to do is almost always the right thing to do. What I mean by that is it is all too easy to blame doctors, specialists, family, friends, God, and even the ground or your clothing for your setbacks and disappointments. The hardest thing to do is take a bite of humble pie at times and admit you could have done better.

What I learnt very quickly, that most times you are not in control of injuries, job interviews, or even contracts on a house. You are in control though of your injury management, your rehab and your decisions. The biggest thing you are in control of though it how you handle setbacks and disappointments.

self-development wins out!

I am standing on my driveway smiling at the camera. I am in nude pumps with black pants and black blazer with patterned shirt. My hair is also pulled back and i am wearing glasses.
Reaching the beginning of another chapter. My first Job!

When you start viewing the people around you as the cause of your problems, it usually helps to take a look within and ask yourself a couple of questions. “ Have I done everything that I possibly could to fix this?” “ Have I tried my hardest to get back there?”. If the answer is no, then there is a lot of work that is needed to be done mentally.

That isn’t a bad thing though! Self development is never a bad thing! In fact, I believe your setbacks and disappointments are what guides your self-development! These chapters of your life are the things that highlights to you where you can improve. The areas improvement is so broad! It can be anything from humility, humbleness, gratitude, the art of being present, or even some more resilience.

The way to determine what your circumstance requires you to learn is a matter of delving deep within. That is an art and a whole other blog itself, and one that I am still trying to uncover myself. However, if you are willing to really look at your setbacks or disappointments, you may just be surprised by what you can learn about yourself. I can guarantee you that you will look back and be grateful things happened they way it happened.

For me, I am so grateful for all my setbacks and disappointments. They created the woman I am now, and will continue to grow and change me. I view my setbacks and disappointments as a chapter in my life or a part of my journey. I welcome the challenges, even if I feel scared or anxious. Because I know the dust will settle and reveal something completely unbelievable.

Isn’t life all about mystery and evolving???? Just think life would be bloody boring without a few unexpected twists and turns!! A movie without a plot twist is just a group of people playing fictional characters without a character arc. BORING!

I hope you all have  a great week, and if you have anything you would like me to talk about next let me know on my socials or even in the comment box below!!

P.s. Did you check out last weeks post??? check it out here https://livingabled.com.au/crushing-self-doubt-my-horse-riding-journey/

p.p.s check out this bloke for more inspo. He is my inspo and gave me my kickstart to get my butt into gear! https://www.facebook.com/inkyjohnson

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