I was recently interviewed about what people should do when overcoming setbacks in life, and in particular how to bounce back from setbacks such as losing a job.

Here are the 7 steps I use for breaking through such adversity…

1.  Take Personal Responsibility: you might not feel “responsible” for your current position, but you are responsible for what happens next. Setbacks are only a temporary blocker, a means of pointing you to new opportunities. Being the equivalent of 2-nil down at half-time doesn’t mean you have “lost”, it’s all about how you respond. Are you Response-Able?

2.  Refocus: take stock of your goals, and reset them. Revisit your Lifeplan, your long-term goals, your values, what’s important to you.

3.  Create a worse-case plan, and a best case plan. Don’t judge these, or engage one as more possible than the other. Just get them on paper. Better on paper than locked away in the recesses of the mind where they become distorted.

4.  Assess your strengths; particularly your Unique Talent (everyone has one). Consider your innate abilities, your developed skills and experience, and your particular passions (the things you love doing and are great at). Do you need to develop more skills, know-how, or knowledge to take you to the next stage?

5.  Reflect on your past successes. Make sure you have a balanced view of your capabilities. When you’ve had a setback it’s only natural to feel the fault rests with you and that you are somehow doomed to further failures. Put your successes into the mix to improve your mindset and confidence.

6.  Take Action: don’t be drawn into procrastination and lethargy. Take action on those aspects of your new goals that you have control over. Getting a fresh job (or setting up on your own) is full time, and you need to get active.

7.  Have a “self-upgrade”: as well as updating your online profile (LinkedIn, Twitter, etc), pay attention to how you look, how you think, your fitness and health. Develop a fresh regime to make you look and feel great. It will reflect to everyone you meet, and that generates opportunities.