Setbacks happen in business. It’s impossible to avoid dealing with failure on some level.

Sometimes you make a mistake. Sometimes, someone else makes one that impacts you in your business. And sometimes, things change in the industry or market forces conspire against you.

How you deal with business mistakes and failures will be the making of you.

Here’s my take on dealing with business mistakes and ultimately thriving.

How To Deal With Business Mistakes And Thrive

Preparation helps, but isn’t fool proof

For over a year now, I’ve been working in the gym with a strength and conditioning trainer. Coach Stilli is an absolute stickler for technique and has really helped me to get fitter and stronger. He’s helped me overcome some long-term back and hip pain issues hanging over from producing three babies.

It feels awesome to make such good progress in anything you’re aiming to achieve, right?

Unfortunately, it’s not a straight line from start to success.

Despite the hours, weeks and months of hard work, I STILL managed to hurt my back a couple of weeks ago.

I bent down to pick something up, forgot to brace my core, and PING. Back in spasm and me in a world of pain.

How do you react when setbacks happen?

Here’s how Old Me would have reacted. In the past, I would have thrown myself a massive pity party.

And most likely I would have all but given up on achieving my goals, with negative self-talk like, “I can’t do it. I’m not good enough.”

Now, I have a different mindset

This time, I approached my recovery differently: My coach and I were able to use the injury to identify some weaknesses and adjust my exercise program accordingly. So after an initial rest period, I’ve been back in training and my recovery has been much, much faster.

5 steps to dealing with business mistakes or failures

Over the last decade in business, I’ve also experienced my own business mistakes, failures and fuck ups!

From issues with manufacturing, to staff, to cash-flow, and everything in between, it definitely hasn’t been a smooth journey. That’s normal!

Here are my 5 steps for resolving problems and going on to thrive and succeed:


I think the first thing to remember is that growing a successful business is not a linear process. Setbacks happen.

Sometimes you try things and they don’t work out the way you think. And sometimes we don’t see the opportunities or threats coming towards us until it’s too late. (Sadly, there’s no crystal ball when it comes to business!)

So #1 is to accept that shit happens sometimes, and to NOT take it personally!

Instead, your mindset needs to be around learning and problem solving. It’s OK to try things out, and if they don’t work then you know not to do that thing again!

Motivation and Ambition

One of the biggest differences between being an entrepreneur vs being an employee is that your motivation has to be completely internal. There is no boss paying you a salary, no manager dictating KPI’s, and no-one else’s vision to inspire you.

Your ‘WHY’ – your own business vision and the reasons why you started your business – needs to be strong enough and important enough to carry you through the tough times.

Keep your eye on the prize, and that’ll keep you motivated through the tough times.


Remaining optimistic when things aren’t going your way is really hard. But it’s essential to your success in business!

Even JK Rowling was turned down 12 times before she was published. 12 times! When you see the runaway success of her Harry Potter series now, it seems ludicrous that her success was not a given. But she had to be resilience throughout those knock-backs.

When shit happens, speak to yourself as you would your own child. Tell yourself, “It’ll be OK.”


Being a creative thinker and a good problem-solver are also essential to your success in business.

Try to approach a set-back as a problem that needs solving. This is a more objective way to look at the situation, which helps to take the emotion (the “woe is me”!) out of things.

Get the right expert help

Hard work is rarely enough. Working with someone who has “been there, done that” experience cuts the journey much shorter.

Much like me with my fitness coach, you’ll experience fewer setbacks, more efficient recovery, and faster and bigger sales growth.

What are you excited about achieving in your business this year?

What’s your big, hairy, audacious goal? Is it good enough to get you out of bed on a bad day?

Some of my clients are launching new product inventions to market. Some are scaling their eCommerce sales. Some are expanding overseas.

All of them are kicking some major goals!

Would you like some help with that?

I work with ambitious product-based business owners all day, every day. Helping them as a business coach and mentor, and as a marketing consultant.

If you’re looking for someone with experience in this niche to help you grow your business and navigate the ups and downs, then let’s chat!

Click the button below to book a free strategy session with me.

Click here to book a free strategy session with Catherine