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Dealing with Disappointment
When it comes to dealing with disappointment, the way you choose to handle it can determine how your life will turn out. When we feel disappointed, all that means is that something or someone failed to meet up to our expectations. For most people, this occurs when they try to reach for a goal and come up short. Everyone will have to deal with this. They way you handle this situation will determine your success or failure in life. Let’s take a deeper look into why we feel disappointed and some things you can do to overcome this feeling.
Expectations are nothing but rules. These rules will dictate, at least in your mind, what has to happen before a satisfactory result is achieved. Let’s say you wanted to lose 15 months in 30 days. You go out there and you start working out and eating right. You do everything the experts tell you and when the 30 days is up, you step on the scale and find out you only lost 1 kg. Chances are that you will feel quite disappointed. The reason is because you set a rule on what has to happen for you to feel satisfied.
So what do you do in this situation or any other situation where you fail to achieve what you set out to achieve? If you do what most people do and give up or complain and whine about how you never get what you want, then you are going to continue to feel miserable. If you decide that you are going to adjust and do better next time, you will be able to succeed at handling disappointment in a productive way.
Remember that disappointment is just a feeling that is caused by the rules you set up. This works externally as well. Let’s say you expected your child to get straight A’s but he or she ends up with mostly B’s. The only reason you will feel disappointed is because you created the rule that unless your child gets all A’s, you will not be satisfied.
So how can you use this fact to help you deal with disappointments? There are two things you can do. The first is to realize that when you are feeling disappointed, it’s because certain rules that you created weren’t met. Whether the rules were placed on you or someone else it doesn’t matter. In order to deal with this feeling, one thing you can do is to change the rules.
Instead of saying, “If I don’t lose 10kgs in 30 days, I am going to be so disappointed”, you can say, “I will do everything I can to reach my goal but if I happen to fall short, I will at least know that I gave it my all.” This is just an example but hopefully you got the point. You made the rules that caused yourself to feel disappointed which means you can also change it.
The second thing you can do relates to rules you set on other people. If you want to stop being disappointed all the time when it comes to other people, create rules that make it hard for people to make you disappointed. The rules of what has to happen for you to be satisfied weren’t something you were born with. You created them. It’s great to have high expectations for yourself because you have control over your actions but when you place too many rules on other people who you don’t have control over, be prepared to have a lot of disappointments.
Dealing is disappointment just requires understand what causes this feeling to come up in the first place. Once you understand that it’s a result of you or other people failing to meet your rules of what has to happen for you to feel satisfied, you can begin to start changing those rules to make it harder for you to feel disappointed.