How can people develop the resilience to bounce back from failure? originally appeared on Quora: the place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world.
Let me start by saying that bouncing back from failure is not easy and it takes time. But at the end of the day we have no choice but to move forward. I consider my divorce a failure. Despite the fact that I made the decision to leave the relationship, which took an enormous amount of strength, it was still a failed relationship. My parents remained married throughout their lives. I never had been exposed to divorce and couldn't imagine not mirroring my parents' path. No matter how difficult and damaging the relationship proved to be, I resigned myself to the thinking that this was what marriage is. Thankfully I was able to get to the point where I realized that I deserved a very different life. And that's what I got the day I left. I had quite a road ahead of me between navigating through the life of a single parent of six year old twin girls to figuring out how I was going to support myself, having been a stay-at-home mom for many years.
It's important to be patient and give yourself time and empathy as you go through the process of figuring out how to not only bounce back but many times start anew. After suffering any kind of failure, you want to make sure that whatever is next is both compelling, challenging and will inspire growth. Every failure experience teaches us so much. In the case of my marriage I settled for a situation where I didn't have to challenge myself. I would be taken care of financially which meant no risk taking on my part. It was my easy way out. When I exited the marriage I had no choice but to figure out how to survive on my own. I tapped into whatever strength I had mustered to leave and built on it through the challenges that were ahead of me. That's how my resilience started to present itself.
Starting SoulCycle and cultivating its growth toward becoming a major player in the fitness sector was one of the biggest confidence building experiences of my life. I couldn't have been prouder of the resilience I had developed, that led me to start this business with my two co-founders in the spring of 2006. Every marker along the way that signified our success was nothing short of thrilling, whether if was Hillary Clinton deciding to do a charity event in our small initial studio of 33 bikes, or our landing an amazing space in Bridgehampton, an authentic barn in the summer of 2007. That was when are business exploded. As this incredible run continued, I never in a million years predicted that our partnership would ultimately fail causing me to exit the business. At the time, finding resilience from this horrendous experience seemed next to impossible. This was my baby and suddenly no longer in my hands. But through all of the almost unbearable anger and sadness over this event, I never let go of my calling, which was to be on a bike, on the instructor podium, imparting an experience that would make my riders feel amazing. At this point it was in my blood and I knew that I would figure out another way to do it. As painful as it was, I continued to teach my classes at SoulCycle because once I got up there, all of the anger went away, I was doing what I do and was one with my ridership/community. By remaining there I ultimately met my future Flywheel co-founders. My refusal to give up after the failed relationship at SoulCycle re-built my resilience and enabled me to start again with two amazing partners.
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