How To Handle Defeat With Integrity

How To Handle Defeat with Integrity

Defeat hurts, it brings emotional, social, and economic pains to the looser(s). In our lives, we may have experienced defeat either as a member of a team, a party, or a family. It is important that we learn how to handle defeat with integrity. Assuming you have suffered no kind of defeat yet, congratulations!

But please, don’t despise some of the insights, wisdom, and tips that I’m about to share here with you. As we know, Sports and political defeats can weigh heavily on the losing candidate or team. At least you are seeing or hearing some reports or seeing some evidence since after the U.S. Presidential election this past November.

. The anger, frustrations, rationalizing, and misinformation and suspicions, lawsuits, and counter campaigns, conspiracy theories have been overwhelming. Why because defeat can be painful and a heavy loss. Any kind of defeat can be devastating, losses, disappointment, failure of any kind weighs heavily on the soul.

With this knowledge; the best thing to do is to accept the outcome or result of the best effort we put in and lost, and move on to the next chapter of our lives and dreams. Doing so will save your life from further loss, humiliation, pain, mistakes, and regrets. It will also help one not to lose any lesson that is to be learned from the defeat. I’m prompted to write on this topic today because of the defeat of the current political fight and its consequences going on in the country. Also, for some self-defeating habits, I have observed from some people I know closely. Every situation or circumstance of life is as good as we make it.

Some Kinds of Defeats That Hurts

Defeat can be any of the following: A failed course, failed business, failed relationship, failed health, or failed promise resulting in shattered dreams. Many people experience defeat or devastating experiences in life on different scales. No one is immune to defeat or failure/ But where we need to pay attention to is how we handle life’s disappointments. If one learns how to handle defeat with grace and integrity, it will reduce some negative consequences that happen to some people as a result of some of these harsh life realities. By the way, what do we consider as failure or defeat? Let’s see…

What Defeat and Failure Means

I believe that failure will always vary from person to person and from situation to situation. Notwithstanding. Failure basically involves “the inability to achieve some proposed or predetermined goal or aim.” Nobody likes to fail, but failure, disappointment, remains part of the human experience, and it is no respecter of persons or status. While “defeat means to overcome in a contest, election, battle, to prevail over,…” Defeat is part of the game of life, it is worth repeating. Defeat can be as bitter as one makes it.

4 Negative Emotions of Defeat

  1. Fears and Anxiety: Some negative emotions of defeat include Concerns of looking weak or foolish, feelings of inadequacy., fears of being abandoned, isolated, disrespected in the public. Another negative feeling is the feeling of having the fear of criticism or disapproval from other people. However, that’s not reality. No one is perfect, except God.

2. discouragement: Defeat leads people to feelings of discouragement. As some people get overwhelmed with the shock of their experience, they become discouraged and overcome by a negative mindset. Situations change human beings for good or worse.

3. Sadness: Defeat causes the feeling of sadness or the down in dumps kind of feeling. The anger can be self-directed or towards others, or the government, or anyone. That’s why today’s society is so tense. So many people are going through a lot of sadness, because of how hard the year has been, the losses, legal battles, health challenges, closed business, and so forth.

3. Frustrations: A defeated person feels the painful thought of frustrations, seeing nothing but roadblocks here and there. I have a close person suffering from this moody blues, who has been feeling frustrated for quite some time now. This person has quit 4 jobs within 8 months. It is hard to explain what goes on in people’s minds when they are going through a tough time. Feeling hopeless, and the negative thought of saying to yourself, “I don’t think I can get through this.” It is so sad to observe people go through time pessimistically. And that’s why many are depressed and suicidal thoughts nursed.

4. Guilt or Shame: A defeated hope can be so painful, so humbling, and so regretful. It can generate all kinds of negative emotions, as guilt and shame. Because it makes you believe that you have let some people down. That’s why we need to learn how to handle life’s disappointments, defeats, failures, crises, or whatever with the right understanding of how life works. There is nothing wrong with our ambitions, as some of us dream to change the world, to be great, powerful, and successful. Alongside, one has to learn how to handle any unexpected circumstances gracefully, maturely, without losing one’s mind.

You Can Get Through Any Defeats In Life With A Positive Mindset

I want to help you believe that you can get through any unpleasant situation, disappointment, or losing a job, loss of a loved one, divorce, loss of business, income, and so forth. But you just have to train your mind to see beyond the present situation and look into the future and have faith in your higher power – God. As you commit your ways and your circumstances to your higher power, you will not lack the grace to persevere and to grow from whatever the challenge. I believe this because I have experienced it in my life; when it feels that there is no more hope, but through faith, things will turn around for the better!

The goal of everyone involved in a context is to win that’s for sure.  But what happens if we do not win? The goal of every student is to pass his or her class. What happens if the student fails the class? Defeat can turn so bitter for the defeated who cannot handle it properly..

Nobody enters any race with the goal to lose. Players play their opponents with the aim to win, However, the fact of life holds that no matter how much the preparations, and predetermination, anything can go wrong to challenge the coveted expectations.

Handling Defeats With Integrity

 The problem is not with our goals in life, but with achieving such goals. That’s why the influential thinkers and philosophers of old took time to contemplate, think, reflect, and guide their actions based on principles. So, I will seriously suggest that we learn from successful leaders of the past, and some outstanding moral thinkers on how to handle both defeat and victory because both have their effect on our overall wellbeing and legacy. How a person celebrates victories or swallows defeat matters a lot.

 For some people who can’t handle defeat gracefully, wisely, and courageously, it can lead them to further defeats along the line. The exemplary life of Abraham Licon, Thomas Edison, Benjamin Franklin, and so many others, still speak from generation to generation. My best examples of leaders with outstanding moral courage who handled defeats in their careers and personal life so well were these two men: Honest Abe and Thomas Edison.

As I observe what is happening today, and the awful examples of today’s leaders and followers, I can’t help to ask what is wrong with the leaders of the 21st century? I think I know the answer. Some of them need to learn better, and to understand that there is no guarantee in the game of life. Winning is not everything, success is not everything, but who you are and what believe matters.

 So when things happen contrary to our pre-determined expectations, all we can do to keep our sanity and integrity is to handle any considered defeat with grace, humility, wisdom, and contemplation. Once we do, we will learn something worthwhile from the experience. Men like former leaders of the past thought every leader who will learn how to handle defeat, failures, or disappointments, with courage, hope, truthfulness, and integrity, without passing blames on everyone and the system. If today’s leaders will lead with heart and integrity, and trustworthiness, the followers will follow the same values, and the society or system will be healthy and less bitter and hostile.

If one remains bitter, feeling defeated, revengeful, shifting blames, unrestrained, the person hurts himself/herself and others, and clouds the atmosphere for peace and unity. And the lesson or any hidden opportunity gets lost. What’s my point? I want to stress the need for us as adults, leaders, people in positions of authority to learn how to handle success, as well as setbacks and defeats with understanding and wisdom.

  In one of my previous articles, I wrote about living a life of legacy as exemplified by American past influential thinkers and presidents. Abraham Licon offered much to American democracy and leadership qualities that are timeless, Benjamin Franklin the same, and the rest of them. Their examples are still there for everyone today to emulate.

Positive Affirmation Can Help Lift The Moody Blues

As a businessperson, when a project doesn’t turn out the way we expected when our best articles don’t attract google’s attention when from month to month, there is no single referral from our business ads when the investments do not return any dividend, how do we feel? What we tell ourselves or tell others under such situations matters.

The ability to handle failure, disappointments, in any area of our lives, is a skill we must learn. And what makes it easy to learn is the values we cherish. For instance, Abraham Licon, my favorite leader, was trustworthy, sincere, and straightforward. He was a man of moral principle, just like George Washington, he was truthful.

Abraham had a nickname as “Honest Abe,” could you just imagine what an honest and disciplined leader he was!. It is good to put it in writing that the “architecture of leadership, political, and none political falls apart without honesty and integrity. Unfortunately, looking at most people today, there is no longer emphasis on values and moral principles. Such important principles as honesty, integrity, and trust, are being undermined no wonder the world is so sick!

Failure Is Not Bitter If It’s Not Swallowed

When we swallow defeat, it affects our ability to function effectively from that moment on. As someone says, “we can do better”. We can learn better, some of the important life principles that can lead us through the tough periods of life without losing our identity. When Success Seems Delayed.

We have to realize that every great leader, all have experienced numerous defeats in pursuit of their dreams, but were able to handle their failures. Every great person or successful person has experienced some periods of failure, disappointing defeats, setbacks,  but refused to be defined by the defeat. I think my summary and call for action is that we should not allow our defeats in any area of life to define us. Instead, let us learn how to handle defeat with integrity from great people of old and move on in life!

12 thoughts on “How To Handle Defeat With Integrity”

  1. Things happen for a reason and as a believer of destiny or predestined situations it’s much easier to deal with such situations and for those who are still struggling this a just the right article to help a lot of us get a better feet with failure and I’m glad to see such progress. When you face such situations with integrity you have a better chance of coming back better 

    1. Hi JMason, thanks so much for your kind commend and valuable input. Handling defeat with integrity is a lesson worth learning. 

  2. Hey Favorme!. How disappointing would it be for me to see a Work of art and not commend it?. This really is one lovely and helpful article! I can only imagine the work you put into this, a big thank you for sharing this. Defeats really is never something pleasant! It hurts any time any day. thanks for your tips in handling defeat better with integrety.

    1. Hi Josh, thanks for your very kind comment. I’m glad to receive your feedback on this article.

      Have a pleasant December!

  3. Hello there! This is a really great article! I think everyone goes through some form of experience of defeat at some point in their lives. I too have had my fair shares of defeat and have also experienced the 4 negative emotions that arise from it. While it may not be the most comfortable feeling in the world, it is an experience that truly makes us become stronger individuals. What you mentioned about not allowing the defeat to define us is key. Thank you for this post!

    1. Mike thanks for your candid comment. I’m glad to see that you have developed the proper approach and perspective on how to handle life issues. As it is being said that
      it’s not what happened to a person that matters but how the person reacts to it. See more of you.

  4. An article that goes to your heart. Unfortunately, today the values have been reversed. Morality is no longer what it used to be. It’s getting harder and harder to lie worthy. For each, success means something else. About failure I have the following theory: if you are not on the path set by God, you will have a failure. If you are on the right path, God will help you reach your goal. I say this from my life experience. I also had failures, of course, but I found that I was on the path. So the failures didn’t affect me (maybe just for now). I am interested in the appreciation of others only insofar as I value them. And at the moment they are extremely few.

    1. Carmen, thanks so very much for being part of this discussion, as I see it. You’ve raised some excellent points about failure. And I agree with your smidgen advice. Without a doubt, I know how hard it is to be in the minority, to live by the principles and values you cherish, in the world of today. However, we have to live to be the change we wish to see, starting from our homes…

      Thanks again, for your comment.

  5. Thank you for this article…on how to handle defeat with integrity. I believe things in life happen for a reason. We can either learn from them or continue to be defeated. I like the first option. Take my defeat with integrity, I guess…lol

    Either way,  I like the quotes that you have here. I agree positive thoughts can make one’s day go a lot better. I guess that is why they have the saying you shouldn’t wake up on the wrong side of the bed…

    I did learn about the 4 negative emotions of defeat while reading your post and found them to be interesting. Never thought about it that way.

    1. Lakisha, thank you so much for your candid comment. We must devote time, to learn, and guide our minds against negative thoughts and actions. Disappointments, failures of any kind can be devastating, but with knowledge and learning from others’ experiences, we can handle them in a safer way. But unfortunately, just as your quote suggests, a lot of people are waking up on the wrong side of the bed. Lol.

      Once again, thanks for being part of the discussion.

  6. Hello,

    Thank you for sharing this beautiful article about how to handle defeat with integrity. 

    This is a really interesting and motivating article. I agree that in today’s life people deal with a lot of situations in which they possibly experience defeat. Defeat if swallowed is a bitter thing, as you stated. But you shared some good strategies to over come the defeat. I think the most important way to overcome it, is remaining hopeful and motivated. In any situation we should not lose hope and lack motivation.

    All the best! 

    1. Meena, thank you so very much for your excellent comment on this topic. Your point is well stated. As you rightly mentioned, having hope is very critical during any crisis situation. Be it depression, loss of a relationship, business, money, job, health, election, etc. That’s because with the eyes of hope you can see beyond that present circumstances. Similarly, you ought to remain motivated, use every tool within your disposal to keep your mind motivated, and take positive action to minimize the effect of the defeat or whatever challenge.

      Once again, thanks for stopping by, hope you visit often.

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