How to deal with ups and downs : Bounce back, keep going or give up?How to deal with ups and downs :

We all have one thing in common: we’re human! And like all humans, we have our ups and downs…

The problem is that we sometimes find it hard to accept this, trying to ensure that everything always goes our way, that we’re always on top of our game, motivated, in the clear, with good energy… Every human being goes through ups and downs, neither of which is definitive.

In my FLOW philosophy, I often talk about the importance of managing, and above all surfing, the highs AND the lows:

What you do during your lows will bring you up; and what you do at the top will determine your next lows…

We’ll start with the phase that requires the most perseverance and resilience, and is inevitably the most difficult:

How can we manage those difficult phases when we feel like we’re stagnating, declining or simply totally lost in a fog of doubts, weariness and loss of energy?

👎The art of dealing with slack periods👍

When :

  • Morale not at its best
  • We’re faced with too much decision fatigue: choices, dilemmas, lots of decisions…
  • You feel like you’re stagnating because of too much effort (plateau effect and series of failures).
  • You lose confidence, wondering whether to carry on or move on to something else… but what?
  • We fall into a spiral of doubt and discouragement

Here’s what I have to say about how to deal with this kind of phase.

Take a break!

Paradoxically, we want to push ourselves harder in this type of period, to the point of putting in more and more effort…

Force, force… then it breaks!

And what if you just need a little break?

Take a short day, or a weekend… or even a few days…

I’ve already talked about the art of letting go in this podcast… Or how to differentiate between effort and persistence.

I understood this in sport.

When I practice a discipline too much, I always end up in a plateau phase where my performance stagnates… or even plummets!

Instead of pushing myself, I take a little break, train differently or do something else. Then I come back after a few days, weeks, when I feel like it… And, strangely enough, I reach a new milestone!

It’s a well-known fact in sport that overloading the same muscles every day leads to stagnation in muscle development, because breaks are necessary for development (healing etc.) I won’t go into details…

Your mind, too, needs to take a break or focus on something else.

Apply it to life!

Whatever the field, whatever the context, take a little break, step back or do something else!

Avoid ruminations and excessive introspection

Don’t fall into the trap of “knots” in the brain.

If you start questioning everything, asking yourself 10,000 questions, staying focused on everything that’s wrong… You’ll stay in a negative spiral.

Learn to really observe your thoughts and let them flow through you without weighing you down: meditations, journalling…

That’s why a break doesn’t have to mean “lying down and brooding”.

Above all, avoid making decisions that are too emotional; the pause should allow you to take the time you need before responding.

If you’re going to do introspection, do a useful one.

Ask yourself the right questions:

  • Is what I’m experiencing and feeling temporary or regular (has it been going on for a long time or is it repeated)?
  • What’s draining so much of my energy? Thoughts, actions, conversations with others or in my head, situations etc… Identify the sources!
  • How is this situation an opportunity? How can I turn it into an opportunity? (this question has helped me so much in my stockings, even in hospital…)
  • What am I really LOVING right now?

The idea is not to fall into positive thinking, but constructive thinking!

Making a “Not To Do List”

Everyone talks about the “to do list” that keeps filling up. I also like to have a Not To Do List of everything I need to stop.

It’s always easier to say what we don’t want, rather than what we do want… So we might as well do it!

From the questions above, you can already observe those habits, actions and situations that you may decide to stop.

“What is it that really gets under my skin and no longer serves me that I need to stop?”

Get involved by writing it!

You’ll see how relieving yourself of these burdens will leave room for constructive new actions.

It will also reveal the importance of change:

Continue or abandon? Is it: tasks, operating modes, ways of doing things, periods, people… or the whole project or activity?

Change environment

Creativity needs movement!

When you’ve had enough, change your environment.

Go for a walk in an unfamiliar place.

Take a trip, even for a few days, not necessarily far away.

Go somewhere you’ve never been before.

Change your environment, one day or several days, and you’ll see the effect on your brain 😉

Reinventing yourself

The same habits, the same actions, the same ways of thinking will always lead you to the same results and the same cycles of ups and downs.

You may have got there with all that, but now you have to reinvent yourself!

The lows are often opportunities to readjust our direction to move to another level, or to go towards what’s calling us now.

I’ve talked a lot about this over the past few weeks at the S.T.A.R. launch. You go through cycles and different seasons. If you’re stuck in one direction, it’s time for a change!


The most important thing is to accept these phases. Don’t fight against it, don’t torture yourself or feel guilty.

You’re human, it’s a time to slow down, reflect, step back, reinvent, adjust, and create your future highs and standards!

Make a note of it:

Periods of stagnation, slowing down, going downhill… are periods of transformation!

It’s like a springboard where you have to go down to pick up speed before going back up!

We’ll be talking about the art of managing highs to avoid creating lows in a future newsletter…

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