Get back up

Like any calculated risk taker, I’ve suffered a fair share of setbacks in my personal and professional life.

Each one offers something to learn from, but they still suck. Like anyone else, I’m prone to embarrassment and vulnerability when the cards don’t fall the way I intended and a loss is there for everyone to see.

Everyone experiences this. So, what do you do?

Well, one of my prior bosses succinctly told me, “Get the fuck back up and get back on the field.” That’s one way to put it.


Here is another: This famous painting depicts a boxing match between Jack Dempsey and Luis Firpo in 1923 and hangs in the Whitney Museum of Art.

Falling through the ropes is a bit what it feels like when you’re experiencing a setback or a loss.

Funny thing, though. The man falling through the ropes is Dempsey, the man that inspired Mike Tyson to fight, reigned as world heavyweight champ from 1919 to 1926, and has been ranked one of the greatest fighters and punchers of all time.

And he came back to knock Firpo out shortly after this fall.

A replica of this painting has hung in one of my offices for many years, and every time I feel like I’m getting my ass kicked, I am reminded to simply get back up and get back to work.

At least whatever setback I’m having isn’t going to hang in a museum forever.

It only seems fair to see what happens when Dempsey got back up in this video.