The Lotus and The Mud - 10 Questions to Turn Setbacks Into Successes

mind relationships Mar 21, 2023

In a small village by a tranquil lake, a kind-hearted orphan girl named Lila lived in a mud-covered hut. She admired the lotus flowers that bloomed in the murky waters nearby. One day, she met an old wise woman, Aanya, by the lake.

"You seem captivated by the lotus flowers", Aanya said.

"They remind me there is hope in the darkest of places", Lila replied.

Aanya shared a story of how the gods created the lotus to teach mankind about resilience and hope, despite the harshest conditions.

Lila was moved by the story and learnt that, like the lotus, she could rise above her circumstances.

Inspired, Lila tended to the lotuses, watching as each flower bloomed one petal at a time, slowly revealing its beauty. She embraced her challenges with newfound compassion, and the villagers soon recognised her inner strength and wisdom.

Lila's transformation touched the hearts of the villagers, who learnt from the lotus and Lila's journey. The community thrived on love, understanding and compassion, inspired by the girl who chose to rise above the mud, just like the lotus flower.

I love this powerful story that I learnt from a very special friend whom I will reveal later...



Here are some more stories, inspired by clients, about turning setbacks into successes -

1. Prescribing Connection to Remove a Cocktail of Medications

After a knock at the door a colleague stood looking at me excitedly.

“I have the perfect coaching client for you!” they said.

They shared a story about a wonderful entrepreneur who was into "meditation and such things". remember smiling with curiosity and anticipation.

When I met this entrepreneur they proceeded for 2 hours to share their story and I could visibly see them relax in their body. They had witnessed domestic violence and experienced a lot of 'mud' in their past. It gave them a certain “stickwithability”, in their words.

After a few months of coaching, something miraculous happened. They no longer felt they needed their chronic pain or anxiety medications. They gave up smoking too.

It seemed that their setbacks only needed to be 'heard' for them to heal. Their body returned to its natural state of connection.


2. From a Draining Partner to Finding a Place of 'Oneness'

“They don’t understand me”, my client complained.

“They just don’t get it. They don’t appreciate me or anything to be honest. I can’t stand to be around them anymore.”

This relationship was affecting their health, happiness and now disturbing their mind enough for this client to not have the same inspiration for their meaningful work.

When we delved deep into their past, they had a very critical parent who would frequently complain about other people and their partner too. Subconsciously their awareness was very attuned to problems.

“What if the main problem was the fact that you are looking for problems?”, I asked.

They looked shocked but nodded in agreement. A powerful insight came - they struggled with their partner because they were secretly blaming themselves and delaying their happiness because of this circumstance. They started to see the 'oneness' of their experience instead of the 'lack'.

It reminded me of this great Zen saying -

“You are perfect, yet there is room for growth.”


3. From a Struggling Business to 6-Figure Profits

At the start of my coaching journey I worked with an entrepreneur who was struggling with negative narratives. They were pessimistic, would take things personally and lived in self-doubt.

Consequently, even though they were the founder of their business, they would, in their words, “meddle” in the details and not allow their staff to figure problems out themselves. The business was struggling as a result.

We discovered that their 'mud' was their incessant fear, self-doubt and 'not enoughness'. At the start of their career this motivated them but now it drained them. But from this 'mud' could bloom something more beautiful.

Through the power of compassion they decided to let go and be completely okay if their business didn't work out, because it didn't define them. They were worthy and deserving of peace regardless. The business thrived with this approach and they went on to set up other businesses with peace and ease, over stress and frustration.



Here are my 10 compassionate questions to help you turn setbacks into successes -

1. What if this setback was the start of a new story, what would your next step be?

2. Who do I want help from right now?

3. What is the feeling right now?

4. What thoughts have created that feeling?

5. Who was I being? Who can I become?

6. If I believed that I was a master of setbacks, what would I do to turn this into a success?

7. Why is it true that I can turn this into a success?

8. How can this environment be my 'mud'?

9. How can I use my gifts to turn this setback into a success?

10. Why must I show myself compassion during this setback?



If this blog spoke to you, get in touch to share in 1 line what your favourite part was.

And if you have a powerful mission and you are going through some setbacks, get in touch to learn more about our bespoke experiences to help you create more time, peace and success.

Oh, and the story about Lila and Aanya was by my very skilled friend Chat-GPT4. With some detailed prompting of course.



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