VALORIE BURTON: Dust Yourself Off and Keep Going!

Dear Friend,

“Success is the ability to go from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm,” Winston Churchill famously said. It’s one of my favorite quotes and the source of inspiration I’d like to share with you this week.

It can be easy to get discouraged when you make a mistake or fail at something. The key to overcoming the doubts and discouragement that play in your mind is to forgive yourself, learn the lesson, and keep going. So how does this message apply to you this week? Is there an area of life in which you’ve been beating yourself up or felt on the verge of giving up? Have you downsized a dream or settled in some way because of the fear of failure? Consider these areas where a setback can tempt you to give up:

> Health.

Do you have good intentions to eat healthier or work out, but seem to fall back on your plans? Perhaps you do well for a week or two, then fail miserably for a month. Don’t give up. Persist in your intention to be healthier. Refuse to allow setbacks to be permanent. There’s nothing you can do about what’s done. Focus on the present and do what you know is best for you today.

> Work.

Perhaps you’ve been trying to launch a business or get that promotion, yet things are not moving along the way you’d hoped. Don’t lose your enthusiasm for the vision! It is those who persevere who eventually win the prize. Focus on the big picture rather than small setbacks. If you know the path you are walking is the one for you, success is imminent. But you must persevere so that you are in the right place when that special opportunity crosses your path.

> Relationships.

Perhaps you are frustrated in a relationship where you just aren’t able to communicate with someone. You start a conversation with the best of intentions, but somehow it ends negatively. You feel ready to give up. Whether with a family member, friend, or co-worker, choose to look for the lesson this conflict is offering and allow it to be a spiritual teacher that empowers personal growth.

> Finances.

If you’ve promised yourself you’d save more and spend less, yet find yourself charging more and saving less, don’t give up. Taking control of your finances means making smart decisions over time. Start with a goal that is realistic – and when the month comes to a close, ask yourself, “What did I learn? What could I do differently? How could I continue to make better choices next month? Begin with small steps. Little successes give you the confidence for bigger ones.

Success requires that we get comfortable with the risk of failure and imperfection. Whether the vision you are aiming for is being a great parent, a great entrepreneur, a great spouse, or a better steward of your time, expect bumps along the road. It’s just part of the journey. The bumps aren’t fun, but enduring them and learning from them builds character and strength – two traits that are sure to contribute to your long-term success.

My challenge to you this week:

Don’t let the bumps in the road knock you off course! If you’ve fallen down, get back up, dust yourself off, and keep going.

Journaling assignment:

In what area are you feeling discouraged? What lesson(s) does the situation offer? If you choose to persevere, what is the payoff you most hope for? Choose to focus on the “payoff” or vision you hope for.

Valorie Burton, a life coach and speaker, is the author of Listen to Your Life, Rich Minds, Rich Rewards, What’s Really Holding You Back?, Why Not You? and her latest, How Did I Get So Busy? The 28-Day Plan to Free Your Time, Reclaim Your Schedule and Reconnect with What Matters Most. Subscribe to her FREE, inspirational e-newsletter at