Taking the L: How Embracing Losses Can Lead to Winning

Zakayla Hughes

Taking the L: How Embracing Losses Can Lead to Winning

I was once terrified of the losses. I couldn’t fathom the thought of losing what I had worked so hard to gain. I constantly convinced myself not to take any out-of-the-box risks because I was stable and comfortable. They can come in ways that are totally unexpected, but we can’t let the fear of losses keep us from taking risks.  

Losses can come in the form of losing your job, a rejection for a promotion, sickness, a death in the family, or something huge and global like the 2007-2008 financial crisis. If you think about losses as things that throw your balance off temporarily, they are less overwhelming.   

While reading “Big Magic” by Elizabeth Gilbert, I learned that in order to prepare for the losses, you have to find your reason for doing what you do. That reason will be your strength through the not-so-great situations. Practicing self-love and self-care was important for my spiritual, emotional, and physical being.

Previously, when I took a loss on something, I looked for an escape. Whether it’d be my parents, food, or friends, I wanted to find a distraction so I didn’t have to look adversity straight into the eyes and deal with it. However, being terrified of the losses kept me from achieving greatness. My fears halted me at average.

When I decided to pursue this journey of entrepreneurship, I had to deal with my fear of losses. This chapter of my life means being okay with the fact that things aren’t always going to go as planned. Accepting that reality on this journey is just as important as celebrating the wins.

“Wins and losses are a part of being a boss” – Eric Thomas.  

Take the hit, deal with it, and get back to the grind.

When you arrive at a roadblock, instead of running away from it or wallowing in self-defeat, sometimes you just need some new healthy habits to help you cope. Sometimes you have to go back to the basics to get yourself on the right track again. For me, it was getting back in the gym on a consistent basis. It helps keep my mind clear from worries and concerns (that’s probably because the only thing I’m thinking about is breathing, but you get my point). Find something that gets you away from the chaos, something that is not a part of your day-to-day responsibilities. Do you like reading? Grab a book; join a book club. Love playing basketball? Head to the courts for some pick-up games. I believe practicing positive coping mechanisms can be one of the best ways to ride the waves of losses

When things don’t go as planned, personally it is also a time that my faith is tested. My faith in myself, my product, and, most importantly, my faith in God. Principles that I learned growing up taught me that faith outweighs fear any day. As T.D. Jakes preaches, “Resist your fear; fear will never lead to you a positive end. Go for your faith and what you believe.”

At the end of the day, don’t forget why you’re doing what you’re doing in the first place. Remember that the goal is still the goal, even when it seems impossible to reach. Start mentally and emotionally preparing for the obstacles that are in the future, practice positive coping mechanisms when they come, and remain faithful throughout.

To quote Benjamin Franklin’s sage advice, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”

The losses are coming, whether we like it or not.

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Taking the L: How Embracing Losses Can Lead to Winning