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La Chillona to La Chingona: How to Conquer After a Fail

How to Go From La Chillona to La Chingona was a topic I spoke about recently for the Hispanic Women’s conference. The official title was “How to Rise & Shine After You’ve Crashed & Burned” – but it’s all the same, right?

It was such a spirited conversation, I thought I’d come share that wisdom over here. Life is long, we endure all kinds of experiences and not all of them are win-win-win-win. There’s a lot of valleys in between those peaks. But many times, either out of pride or denial, we try to hide them or rework the story so it doesn’t sound so awful. But I’ve learned that once you own up to your mistakes, the load is lightened a lot!

Live brightly illustration. La Chillona to La Chingona: How to Conquer after a Fail.

Sometimes we are the victim of other people’s bad decisions, sometimes WE are the ones who tipped the scales in the wrong direction. Regardless of how things happened, there comes a point when you have to decide how to move forward.

I’m not the end-all, be-all authority, but I’ve had my fair share of ugly cries! We all have, right? Here are some perspectives I’ve learned to help me grow from the situation. I hope they help you!

Let your inner la chillona have her time.

CRY. Let it out, flush out those heavy emotions. It’s part of the healing process. If you don’t release that anxious energy in a healthy way it will emerge in an unhealthy way. Pimples, backaches, hair loss, binge eating. Give yourself half an hour…tops. Okay, maybe a day. Tell yourself, “I’m giving myself X amount of time to mourn this situation, that’s it.” Don’t stay in that place. Choose to stand up and start over, you have no choice!

Assess the situation.

What went wrong, and why did it hurt? Break it down in a mechanical way and figure out the steps that would have avoided the result. This is so you know next time. For this step, you really have to remove emotion, especially if it involves close friends and family. It doesn’t mean you have to be cold to anyone, it just means you have be specific about the lesson you learn. “Next time I’ll fact check. Next time I’ll keep my opinion to myself. Next time I won’t trust that person. Next time I’ll think if I really need to spend that money. Next time I’ll have a more specific answer. Next time I’ll practice more. Next time I’ll do it properly.” You get the gist.

Thank the haters.

In your mind, not in person! I know people always say “Ignore the haters” which really is good advice, but at the same time people who underestimate or attempt to undermine us, don’t realize they are actually fueling our ambition. I remember when my mom would say about the early days of my career choice, “Let me guess, you are going to get paid in glue!” It hurt at the time because obviously, she didn’t have confidence in my skills or ambition. But I replayed those words in my head as I built my business, they helped motivate me to succeed! These days, she knows what’s up and is super proud. I’ve had people laugh at my out loud, call me names, make fun of me, my crafts, my weight, my culture, etc. I just nod and am like, “Bring it on! Gimme that juice!”

Choose to give up or try again

This is a tough one. You really have to go deep and ask yourself if this is worth trying again. Are you TRULY “Hell Yeah!” passionate? If not, let it go. When I worked on my first novel, I had every reason in the world to give up. I procrastinated out of self-doubt, I had co-workers laugh at me, my then-book agent told me my first draft SUCKED! I took all of these as signs that me writing a novel wasn’t meant to be. But it still nagged at my spirit, and after a bit of time, I figured out what I did wrong with my first draft and dedicated time to fix it. After even more trial and error, I ended up with a two-book deal. It took six years in total for that to cycle through, but I glad I didn’t give up. Now, there have been other situations where I’ve crashed and burned and knew I never wanted to go down that path again! If you want to try again, carve time out of your schedule to work on becoming better. It’s not going to fall from the sky into your lap. You have to prep yourself to be ready!

Be fierce and level up your game

Grrrrl! You GOT this! Educate yourself, own your power, make a plan. Make a vision board of where you want to be. Be the underdog who rises up to conquer. Reinvent yourself. learn new skills, surprise yourself and others too! People always say life is short, but I feel like for most of us, life is long – day in and day out. We have a lot of them ahead of us, choose to spend time wisely to build a better life for you and your loved ones. Set some goals, and then make a timeline with marker points to get to those goals. Make a daily to-do list, just 2-3 tasks a day. Celebrate your accomplishments! Teach others how to do it too.

Surround yourself with positive, tough love friends

Stay away from toxic people, phonies, and enablers. Strive to be around people to take action, are true, and are open to give and receive without even saying a word. Strength is in numbers, so help each other out, share knowledge and give those tough love talks as needed. You want people who will keep you on point, cheer you on and help you see thigns from a new perspective.

Be confident and excited for the future!

No matter what your choices, hold your head high and have confidence! Even if it takes baby steps, move towards the direction you want to go. Let go of excess baggage (you know what that is!) savor every moment! You can say a zillion affirmations a day, but if you don’t make a plan and take action, nothing is going to work. So let go of self-sabotage, procrastination, your inner critic and unleash your inner chingona!




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10 thoughts on “La Chillona to La Chingona: How to Conquer After a Fail”

  1. I have re-read this 3 times and shared to 5 different Chicas…
    Thank You! Such great encouragement and advice that you have given, Thank You again.

  2. My trials and tribulations have only served to make me a stronger woman. Thanks for letting the younger ones know that what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.

  3. Thanks for reaffirming my commitment to banish the toxicity in my life. It took a life-threatening event to make me realize what was truly important, & I’ve acted on it. My life is simpler, less drama, & I’m happier. I’ve gone from La Chillona to (almost!) La Chingona!
    BTW, I live in Chandler, AZ & will stop by your store soon. Looking forward to seeing your art!


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