These tips will help you to analyse your mistakes and also help you from going back to your past misdeeds.
Face what went wrong. Write down wherever things went wrong, so they are laid out in front of you in black-and-white. Be honest about what really happened instead of making excuses. Sometimes it’s harder to face a situation that was outside your control than when it was something you caused by your own procrastination or bad decisions. Other people find it harder to accept that they may have contributed to the disaster or caused it. A comeback starts with needing one.Of course, not everything that went wrong in your life may be your fault. Maybe you fell into a drug addiction or acted poorly in a relationship, but it may also be true that you didn’t grow up in a supportive environment or were just a victim of plain bad luck. Don’t blame yourself for things that weren’t in your control, and learn to accept the bouts of bad luck and to work against them, instead of using them as excuses for your present situation.
Learn from what went wrong. Even if it was just bad luck, there are ways to cushion the loss — if you wind up in the situation again. If you failed a university exam, what was the problem? Did you get distracted or not study the material? Did you over-study, freeze up at the exam and forget everything due to anxiety? Were there major distractions in your life, like breaking up with a long term relationship?Ask yourself these questions without judging the answers. You are not looking for excuses to blame other people; give that up right at the start. That’s the last option – it was someone else’s fault. If it turns out that it was, then you have to re-evaluate your priorities and that relationship. Did a friend, parent, partner constantly interrupt your studying with demands for attention? How can you learn to hold your boundaries so this doesn’t happen next time exams come around?
See if you need to reconsider your goal. Though this may seem like an extreme idea, before you make your comeback plan, it may help to reconsider the direction you want your life to follow. For example, does college matter to a career you might be happier in? Would you be better off with shorter, specific training in an apprenticeship or trade school? If you’re a physically active person and could be as happy/fulfilled doing something with visible results: scholarly or office work may not be as good a life choice as construction, electrician work, heating and air, plumbing, automobile tech or forestry.Change the approach: your comeback does not need to go in the same direction as the trial that failed. Life is trial and success/or error (not failure as such). That means failed-trials are only that — that trial failed, like law-/med-school was not for you. If you went into law school because you were politically passionate, maybe activism, campaign advising or lobbying is a better choice for how to accomplish your long term goals.
Ask yourself what you can do about what went wrong. What changes can you make in your life that will reduce the chance of this happening again? If it was a natural disaster, you may purchase emergency supplies and keep them more accessible so that if it does happen again, you have necessities at hand. If it was job loss or a breakup, sort out what you can do to prevent the same thing happening in your next job or relationship.Maybe one of the things that went wrong were the people or situations that were weighing you down. Reevaluate your relationships and see if there are any toxic friendships or relationships that are keeping you from being the person you want to be. If that’s the case, you may need to cut ties.
Decide your priorities and choose your goals. Once you’re informed about what went wrong and why, it’s time to start mapping out your comeback. The map is not the terrain. Your plans can change as you go along, you’ll meet obstacles and also run into unexpected runs of good luck and opportunities no matter what direction you take. If you know what you want and understand more or less how to get it, then it’s easier to start making short term goals to get where you’re going.Don’t worry if you don’t have a perfect 10-step plan for success. It may be something harder to map out like, “Find my true calling,” or “Love myself more.” Just start with a few steps that you know will make the situation better. As you move forward in your comeback, you’ll have a better sense of what you really need to do to be successful.The most important thing is that you take action. Though “actions speak louder than words” may sound like a cliché, it’s absolutely true. You can say that you’re going to make a comeback all you want, but until you take that first step to get there, your words won’t mean a thing.
Talk about your plan with a supportive friend or family member. Talking to someone who was not part of the situation is best. Especially someone who has endured a similar problem. Almost flunking out of school may be salvageable. Talk to older students who made it through the same hurdles you faced and listen to their strategies. If it’s a breakup, find out what others think of how you behaved and how your partner did – that may have some surprises. Your friends may have seen your problem coming long before it happened.Talking it out with someone who cares about you can help you feel like you really can make your comeback, and can give you some great advice along the way.Talking to others about your plan can also make it more likely that you will achieve it. If you actually tell people that you want to turn your life around, you’ll be more likely to do it, because you’ll feel accountable to them. That way, you’ll feel like you’re letting yourself and the people who care about you down if you don’t follow through.
Make some resolutions. These should follow naturally earlier steps. Make time in your life for these resolutions, perhaps by allocating a few evenings a week to staying in with the books. Sometimes flat decisions and will power work. Other times you need to rearrange your life to make it easier to keep your resolutions. If you turn off the IM function on your computer while studying, you won’t get drawn into long conversations with friends till the study session is over. Your comeback plan can be built from a series of baby steps. You won’t be able to turn around in a day, but making small, incremental changes in your life will lead you to success.One of the best ways to sustain will power is to give yourself small rewards for any success, however minor. Every time you do study, mark it off on a score board. Tracking success in small steps with small, frequent self-rewards is one of the most effective ways to accomplish anything. Think about how a game is structured – how often you get points for how much effort and time while playing. If you structure your rewards at the pace of your favorite immersive game, it can have the same effect on changing your habits!
Give up your bad habits. You have reasons that are real for any bad habits you have. Understanding what needs and desires the bad habits fulfill can be the key to trading them in on good habits. Your favorite video game may be more emotionally rewarding because it provides more treats – points, win screens – than studying. Supplying the score board for studying and pacing the rewards so it’s a little easier to get them than it is to get them in the game can help counter that. If you eat too much to comfort yourself and become overweight, think of other things that comfort you and indulge in those instead.Every bad habit fulfills real needs, so your task is figuring out ways to fulfill those needs without hurting yourself or anyone else, in ways that help you achieve your goals rather than hold you back.
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