Get Up Again When You Get Knocked Down

Some days are brutal! I know you know what I mean. We’ve all had them! I’ve had so many metaphors run through my head for how this feels.

  • Keeping your head above water when the world is pushing you under. (I thought it sounded to much related to cash)
  • When you feel like a bobbing yo-yo. (a what?)

That’s enough of that, the title says enough – like that song, “I get knocked down, but I get up again. You’re never going to keep me down.”

This is where it gets challenging. Now I’m supposed to tell you how. But what if? What if the advice I give you, that works for me, and works for six other people, doesn’t work for you, nor 567 others? Oops.

Screw it. I’m not here to tell anyone what to do. I’m just telling some stories. Your truth will speak to you, maybe the writing will help call it out. Let’s give it a try.

Entrepreneurship is a challenging road, and here’s the thing: Life is tough enough without any of us wanting to make it harder. But who knew when we were young, ambitious, courageous, naive, trusting, and invulnerable? I didn’t know; I lived and breathed optimistic spontaneity. It is true – anything is possible – provided . . . . . .

Ha! What is that about?

Timing, opportunity, location, and a whole host of variables exist beyond our control. Anything can happen, and one decision can take you so far from experiences that may be extraordinarily beneficial at some later date in your life. And yet, who knew? Who knows? I’ve found myself, at 43, looking back upon one decade or another and seeing how small choices have had extraordinary results – both positive and negative – in my life. As for getting knocked down, I’ve been knocked down hard – a few times.

These days, great things are happening. The odd part of that is the vulnerability that I experience. Imagine I could fly.

In order to fly I must leap out off a cliff into open space spread-eagle. Yes, that is exactly what I mean by this vulnerable experience. Now, once I’m out there, I must remain spread-eagle in order to soar and stay aloft. Yes, I’m floating in space, defying gravity, soaring above the earth, and I feel an instinctual impulse to withdraw myself into a cannonball in some crazy response to the alarm of defying gravity.

Who said I couldn’t fly? Who said you couldn’t fly? I can see many people who’ve suggested such things to me in the past, growing up and in adulthood. Did that necessarily stop me? Rarely. Most often I would dig my heels in and hear this spirited internal response, “I’ll show you,” or “I’ll show them.” So could I honestly buy the idea that it is people today that are slowing me down or blocking my way? Partly, but very minor in their roles, as the power choice is wholeheartedly my own.

So what happened? I freak out sometimes, I panic, I worry, I cry, I get angry. Okay, I admit it: I’m human. Yes, there have been experiences in my past that haunt my todays. You see? That’s it, right there. On up days, it’s full steam ahead. On low energy days, those ghosts from our past tease at us.

When life is overall running quite smoothly, we weather these transitions with the ups and downs much more easily. When there is some big stuff going on, or has been for a while, this can become progressively challenging. And it is always boiling down to how you respond, in order to determine the outcome of each life chapter. Things getting more negative? Take a close look at your thoughts and patterns. Things improving? You know what I mean.

Whether knocked down, getting up, or staggering along, just remember to do just that: stagger along, keep focused on here and now. Push the feelings, fears, worries aside, and look at you and your choice to experience goodness. Let go and enjoy where you are, while learning to relax into the unfolding of the next moment. This isn’t always easy for a worrier – trust me, I know – but putting a conscious effort to it, becoming aware of it, builds up the ability.

And don’t beat yourself up over it. I used to beat myself up for having lost what I once had. Life, she’s a grand and demanding mistress, offering the ride of a lifetime.

I get knocked down, but I get up again. You’re never going to keep me down.

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10 responses to “Get Up Again When You Get Knocked Down”

  1. Nick Martinez Avatar
    Nick Martinez

    Wow! What a timely read.

    I’ve been in the Real Estate and Mortgage industry for 17 years. I’ve been knocked down and gotten up again several times. Maybe that’s part of my problem today. I already know how hard it is to get up again. And this market is far worse then ones I’ve seen and previously “gotten up from”. Today I went from staggering to down on one knee. I was trying to figure out if it’s better to just go down and work from there, struggle back to two feet, or just give up completely.

    I’m good at what I do. I have out lasted so many others in my business. I am very positive. I am strong. I going to get off this knee now.

    Thank you!

  2. leedman Avatar

    Hi Nick,

    Thanks for the great comments. Great observation seeing that “what you know” about how hard it is getting back up again can sometimes work against you.

    I had another observation too. As younger men, we were very enthusiastic for every challenge. We had something to prove, we had mountains to conquer, and the hero was alive and close to our heart.

    Once we’ve lived in our very materialistic world, sitting atop our throne of success and comfort, feeling powerful, accomplished, or any combination of such, a sort of complacency creeps in that seeps away some of that fight and lust for challenge and adventure.

    Would you also share some of this experience reflecting upon it?

    Another thing I realize this week following a number of exciting and disappointing turns, is how important it is to bounce back, and to bounce back in the company of empowering people. I’ll be exploring this dynamic more once I’ve had more time to tease it out a bit further.

    Again, thanks for the comment.

  3. Debi Avatar

    Thanks for sharing that. It helped a little to read the belief you can get up and success is getting up one more time than you are knocked down. Just how you get up can be more challenge than anyone else can realise.

    My husband died of cancer eight months ago, 4 weeks before our daughters 16th birthday. We were that rare of things. A very close, loving and happy family. We rose to every challenge with love and determination. I can’t express how close our relationship was.

    I have fought to keep our business together and build it into something that can take care of my daughter and myself as I can’t work due to health reasons. I have fought to be positive, to see what a great gift such a family was to me. How incredible it was to be loved and love that much. To be …..

    There in lies the problem. People can be cruel. I have my husbands ex boss actively trying to ruin my business because he doesn’t like me. Somehow, someway, the way I death with my husbands death and funeral offended him, it was too personal, and now I have to pay it seems.

    I know it can only pull me down if I let it but it has dragged me back to that awful death, the funeral and all the pain and I am stuck. I’m trying to get up again but the trouble is there seems little point. That just one man can push me back to that time. I would love to soar and be free. To feel the strength and optimism there can be – yet everything from economics, personal vendetta to my emotional pain seem set on testing me to breaking point when my strength has been tested so much.

    For those who find difficult times remember the REAL things in life. The power of a smile, the pleasure of holding a lovers hand, the joy of seeing love reflected back at you in anothers eyes. The gift of a life shared in love and joy and remember that some of lifes challenges are just the things that happen while the real living goes on and remember to value the true gift – the things you would give it all for – and enjoy them while you have them. NEVER take anothers love or company for granted – live every second of it. I did and my only regret is it ended and I am lost.

    That’s why it is hard to get up this time. If you have what you love most then you are rich beyond measure and lifes other challenges should be viewed as entertainment. Do I get up again and what is the alternative?

  4. leedman Avatar

    Debi, you sound as though you still haven’t found the time for the grief process to find its way through you. I know, without a shadow of a doubt, that there is a life again. What you need is to grieve, and maybe you need someone you can grieve with. You need to move through this. You need time. You need love.

    Can you find that love within you to begin the work?
    Can you find the love to allow more love to find you?
    Can you drop your defenses and find a way to allow your vulnerability to bring down some of those obstacles?
    Do you need to really fight to keep things going?

    Debi, life is richer than this, as you have known. You’re driving yourself down into the pain instead of allowing it and processing it… I know. I did it too… so much loss, so much pain. No time to savour it, process it, or even own… the pressures and responsibilities drive down the door.

    So I wonder, have you really let it knock you down and let all those tears go? Maybe you’re just not ready to get back up yet?
    Maybe you’re waiting for someone to give you that helping hand?
    Maybe you’re really wanting and panting for the breeze of passion to return again?

    When passion is in our life, the work is not a battle fought, so much as it is a passionate and creative pursuit.

    I confess, I’m a bit unclear about your question. I struggled all day as I wondered about your comments and pondered how I’d respond. I honestly didn’t know. I was about to agree and let you know to remind yourself how strong you are and that you will get through this. This remains true. It’s all a question of time. Process is giving time time.

    Instead of giving that answer however, as with many of my writings, another spirit moved in with inspiration and these words flowed until these last two paragraphs. I want you to know that something significant is here for you.

    If you have any means available to you, I would recommend you connect with someone you can talk to. It can be a coach or a counselor/therapist.

    My heart is with you. I know how challenging it is. I also want to say, that from where I’m sitting today, the journey is just beginning. Life still wants you Love.


  5. Debi Avatar

    What I was trying to express was that I have cried, felt the pain and started to rebuild. I have found joy in life, in our daughter and the challenge of carrying on our business. In just a simple walk on a beautiful day. That I know the value of what I had and still have.

    Yet one person has knocked down what I am trying to do and it has sent me back to examining that awful time and all the flash backs. I worked to get through that. I worked hard and I looked forward through it all. The shock of it being pulled down again floored me. It is harder to get back up then. I felt I had moved forward, met challenges and found a little balance. To have someone who really doesn’t care destroy it so easily floored me. Not the business but my little bit of peace. That’s what is hard to get up from. The old straw that broke the camels back story or curve ball analogy. Needed another idea to combat those two so I found your post.

    I know it is a long journey and right now there isn’t space for anyone else. I know that much. Too much to work through and learn. How to be just me and enjoy it for a start.

    It was such a shock that someone could send me straight back to THAT very moment and all that pain.

    I have started to pick myself up. Found a way to resource other products this mans business supplies us, or did. The emotional side is harder. I have worked out much of it is his demons – not mine. I am doing counseling and have been for a while. Apparently I’m doing very well on all levels – pity I can’t sit outside of me and see that – but nice to know.

    I guess I just wanted to say make the most of what you have and even the hardest things can be done. You just have to want to win but it isn’t always the obvious that gives you the biggest challenge. That you can look for help in many places and find that in the most unexpected ways too. That a simple idea like success is getting up one more time than your knocked down can help.

    Life does still want me, else I’d be able to give up but I can’t.

    Thank you


  6. admin Avatar

    Debi, thank-you for coming and sharing. I can understand where you are at and how challenging the struggle. I also commend your courage and strength. Feel free to connect if ever you need to chat.

  7. Debi Avatar

    Thank you.

    It’s funny, not funny ha ha, but funny all the same. Just as I picked myself up from a so called friend of my husband turning on me my Dad was taken seriously ill. He had to fight for an operation to save him – that may well have ended up killing him, but he would have had little time without. He was initially told he was inoperable. Mini strokes with the blockage in a very bad place.

    He got his operation, he pulled through it. He got up one more time than he was knocked down. I know he did it for me as much as anything. It’s been hard to go through for all of us. I’m sure we had help.

    I guess the knocks keep coming but sometimes you do win, for a while.

    You learn so much, change so much, grow so much with each challenge met. Could do with a rest and a bit of fun though sometimes!!

    Thanks for being there at a very low point. It helped. As did your reply.

    Debi x

  8. Jennifer Gait Avatar
    Jennifer Gait

    Hi Debbi,

    I would like to comment on your comment if I may. You seem to be weathering your set-back well, taking action and looking after yourself with counselling, but if I could offer one thing that may help next time you go into a dark place because of your reaction to what someone said, it’s this.

    No-one but you yourself has the power to make you feel anything – you say you know that, but I wonder if you really believe it. As Leedman notes, events don’t make us feel anything, it’s the reaction we have to events that causes our feelings. Events have no meaning but the meaning we give to them. Emotions are generally preceeded by a thought, we react to the thought and feel an emotion. So the trick is when you feel an emotion you don’t want, to become aware of the thought that you had when the event occurred (if you cannot remember the initial thought, identify the thought you are having now about the situation) feel how it makes you feel, and change it to a thought that is still true for you but will make you feel slightly better. Then when you are ready you can later change that thought to one that will make you feel slightly better and so on.

    The relationship your husband, daughter and you had together as a family was a great gift. Of course you will miss him and grieve the change in your circumstances. Allow yourself to feel that deeply when the feelings arise, but don’t get mired in it – emotions are meant to move through us. Also remember the joy you had together, the things that you gave one another, and the gratitude you feel for having had him in your life. I’m sure that he would want you to be happy.

    I hope that this message is not presumptous. If it is I hope that you and Leedman will forgive me for not knowinhg the proper protocol.

    Its just that I can hear your pain. I have been in similar painful places, and sometimes still am, but I move through them much faster now that I know that I can manage my emotions.

    Best wishes to you and to your family.

    And thanks Leedman for a useful post

  9. Debi Avatar

    Thank you. Not presumptuous at all. It was such a shock at the time.

    I simply didn’t expect the level of vindictiveness, personal dislike and intent to harm that came my way. It made me examine my actions and try to find what I did to cause this reaction from this guy. Even this guys family don’t get it. It took a while to understand it is about him, not me. Still haven’t a clue as to why. That no amount of introspection or understanding on my part will explain the situation, but you do try to find the cause, the reason and what you did wrong. It just locked me in the whole time of my husbands death – with the flash backs and nightmares that come with that. Trying to find the cause.

    It was a complete blind side I didn’t expect. I don’t think the world should treat me with kid gloves, and boy it doesn’t, but I don’t usually illicit that kind of reaction from people. What I learned most from this is there are people out there with BIG problems who think they are whole and right. At least I know the cause of most of my pain and look for my faults at times. I also don’t need to know why now – it just is – so deal with it – so what!

    I still wouldn’t swap my life with anyone if it meant it hadn’t had my husband and daughter in it – however short.

    Took me a while but I’m getting there, finding my balance again. Thanks all.


  10. Debi Hanton Avatar
    Debi Hanton

    Wow, clicked into this site today and up popped this one and I remembered it.

    Well. They did operate on Dad and he came through it. Initially. He got an infections, had to have another operation, had a major stroke and died. Shortly followed by his Mom, my Grandmother.

    Then up popped the year Anniversary of Garys death. Then the business wasn’t doing well and I was near breaking point and flat broke. It had to close. Then what? Hey, those friends who worked for me – turned out they were stealing from me – that’s why we really had to close.

    One huge factory unit with cafe to be ripped out, returned to original and all that effort wiped out – on my own – paying everyone off, people not paying me, putting right the rip offs they’d done and trying to keep my home, sanity and daughter safe.

    My alternative therapist who kept me going and was a friend for years died too. George was one in a billion. I’ve been blessed and lost some amazing men. I don’t think there are that many left.

    I’m not back up yet but the Police are about to charge those ‘ friends’ and I miss Gary so damn much. My daughter turned 18 and misses dad so much.

    Know what, whatever the lesson I will learn it because I never want to do this one again.

    Debi x

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