top of page

Managing Setbacks: Life Hacks to Help You Survive

Hi there! Welcome to this week's episode of Charliestoolbox titled, “Managing Setbacks: Life Hacks to help you survive”. I want to discuss this episode because there has been so much that people have gone through these past couple of years. People have experienced death, isolation, disruption to their everyday lives, heartbreak, political unrest, failure, and the loss of their jobs. These moments are earth-shattering and have a profound effect on every one of us. Though I cannot make these situations easier, with less grief, and sadness, I can help you process them and move forward in a hopeful way. You should leave this episode understanding that life is hard, but to keep your joy, you must find ways to process losses, learn, and try to find the hopeful side of every experience. You may not always win this battle, but you can try. This episode is the first portion of my course that will be offered on So, like always let’s start….and talk about me, the world, and finally, the main topic.

About me

I’ve been getting back into going to concerts and live music shows. That was such a vital part of my life and one that I cut out because of COVID-19. Though COVID is still here, I am edging my way back into my life with masks and boosters. I am signing up for newsletters to make sure I am constantly aware of upcoming concerts. Right now, I’m prepping for Club Renaissance and the Steve Lacey and James Blake Concert. So, I am excited to get back to what has been such a vital part of my life.

About the world

Recently, I read and shared the article called, “The crane's wife.” It is an incredible article that discusses the concessions we make as women in relationships. The article is way more eloquent than I am, but please if you want to read it see how we slowly convince ourselves out of our needs in relationships. Please start there. It shows and tells how easily we can slip into this and the brave choice of ending this pattern and choosing ourselves.

Main Topic

The time after something traumatic, heartbreaking, or a big failure, is a crucial moment in your life because how you process it can color the way you view and approach life forever. I’ve seen people come out of heartbreak and failure with new knowledge about the process, and a new understanding of themselves, and their childhood. That is the hopeful side of the spectrum, where their parents provide guidance and tools. The problems have been understood, growth is the outcome, and there is a renewed definition of life and love.

However, there is another side of the spectrum where parents were solely focused on survival, and they could not provide their children with tools they did not have or did not have the time to sit down and teach them how to process life. This side of the spectrum is where your self-esteem is often crushed, you don’t know who you are, and you are struggling with your emotions because it feels like you can’t control them, but they have control of every single aspect of your life.

Though you still grieve with the former, and the pain is still the same, it is easier to move on from these “setbacks” because you have a foundation and tools to help you better process them and move forward. The latter is harder to work through because you don’t have the tools. You don’t know you need these tools. So, you feel stuck.

This podcast episode and my extended course on will give you some guiderails while you are recovering and rediscovering this new person after trauma, failure, and heartbreak. I offer this because often we are ill-equipped, and I want you to heal in a direction where you don’t paint your entire life with sorrow from this pain. Instead, I want to help you understand yourself and your predicament from a place of curiosity and empowerment. So, this episode is like a big sister and not a therapist, here is what I went through, and here is what you need to know to make this event less painful and disruptive in your life.

There are three truths that you should be aware of when it comes to life.

1. Pain is inevitable

2. Life is indifferent to you.

3. There will always be highs, lows, and neutrals in life.

For each of these truths, I will discuss how I discovered them and how these lessons freed me from seeing life as my enemy.

Pain and failure are inevitable

My first real heartbreak and failure were devastating. Though I had seen heartbreak as a bystander or an observer, I had no real understanding of what it was like. I did not know how deep the feelings were buried inside your heart and how much they expressed themselves in your body. So, when I did experience the gravity of it, I did what I saw around me and left. I separated myself from it all and self-isolated because that was easier than truly dealing with my feelings. I moved to another state, distanced myself from my friends, spoke to no one, and just worked hard to save money and make a new life for myself. Up until then, I was a child protected by my parents. Now, I was an adult at 19 feeling out of control and desperately needing help and advice on how to process the pains of life.

What could have helped and what I later discovered after separating myself from my old world was this simple truth. Pain and failure are inevitable. As a society, we do a lot to hide this truth. We teach our children that education, intelligence hyper-vigilance, or cautiousness can protect you from the pain of life. We show in our media that you can avoid this or that wealth and riches will shield you from it (which to an extent is true). But the truth is, no matter how beautiful, healthy, wealthy, or nice you are you will experience pain and failure. If you truly think about it, you can pull from your knowledge bank and point to people who fit those categories and show where they experienced pain and failure. Steve Jobs was fired from apple. Halle Berry had heartbreaks. Oprah had her fair share of pain. No matter who you are, you will experience this so instead of being shocked when it happens. Or wondering why it happened accept that it will happen and that it is a part of life.

2. Life is Indifferent

I grew up with a lot of superstitions and beliefs about generational curses. I would go through things and think why is it always me? Why am I targeted? Why do I always have to have a long hard road? Then I went to therapy and the therapist revealed to me that this victimization. This is how I live life and act as though I am not a participant in my own life. This is how I blame everyone and don’t take any accountability. If I continued down this road, the result would be a life that I did not like and an inability to get out of it because I would believe that it was someone else’s fault, or that the universe is punishing me.

When I reviewed my life with this new framework, I saw how I created a hard life for myself. For example, when I moved, I would move without a plan and then struggle hard to get on my feet. Initially, I thought why this is so hard for me? Why do I always struggle? But in truth, you can’t move without a plan. You need to have a job set up prior to moving. You need to have where you are living located. You need to know some foundational things so that the transition can be easier. Living life and just making rash decisions with no plan will always result in a hard road because you can’t wing big things like this!

Everything I had experienced I had my hand in everything. So, I had to create a new framework that worked for me and pushed me to be active in my life. The framework was life is indifferent to me. life didn’t attack me specifically. It didn’t seek me out. I am not cursed. This isn’t a generational curse. There is not something innately wrong with me. I don’t attract anything. Life is truly indifferent to you. It gives you everything and all things at once, and it is up to you to decide what you will do with it. You must decide your boundaries, what you buy into, what you want, and the steps you will take, that is your decision, and life will rush you with options. So, I impart this lesson to you. You are not targeted; you are experiencing life like anyone else and though this hurts you will one day feel better.

Finally, there will always be highs, lows, and neutrals in life. As humans, we will always experience seasons of highs, lows, and neutrals. That is the nature of life. Some say you have these seasons so that you can truly appreciate each season. For example, without a low, you won’t appreciate the high or recognize the high. Without being in a state of neutrality, you won’t recognize what it truly feels like to be low. You are better able to appreciate no movement instead of complaining that you feel stuck. Movement and change is the nature and you don’t have to look for the pitfalls, but you can be acutely aware that they will come.

These three truths helped me take the chip off my shoulder and stopped me from being a victim. I am not the target, and you are not either. Life does not attack you. Life is indifferent to you. You will receive everything, and it is up to you, your boundaries, and your strategy to get out of it. Finally, stop expecting life to always be at a high. That is not its nature. You will cycle through many stages even throughout the day and you will have to be ok with it.

The next part of this topic is a course that will be released on Sunday, February 5th, 2023 on If you want to know how to manage setbacks and life, please feel free to purchase this course.

And on that note, take care!!


bottom of page