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How to Deal with Disappointments

This week I would like to write about how to deal with disappointments. This week has been a mix of good and bad for me. Good because I got a lot of work done, bad because I’ve had to deal with disappointment after disappointment with the same person within the space of a week.

It got quite overwhelming for me and I really had to sit down and think about how to get over this. How to deal with such disappointments? Below, I’ll outline a few things that are helping me deal with this disappointment and might help you too.


Let your emotions flow

We are constantly told to be strong. To keep going. But how do you keep going if your heart’s heavy and it’s holding you down? These two bits of advice – to stay strong and to keep going – are true but I think there’s a process in dealing with disappointments. I think there are steps you have to go through to properly acknowledge and deal with your disappointments.

When you are disappointed, the thing that you feel the strongest are your emotions. Emotions of anger, sadness, depression & hopelessness, maybe even laughter, laughter of ridicule.

Let these emotions flow. Find a space, alone, and let those emotions go. Are you angry? Rant. Tear up something. Are you sad? Cry. Let go. Do you feel depressed? Pat yourself.

There’s something I do that really helps me with my emotions. I tap my chest just like a mother taps a baby’s chest. I look at myself in the mirror, while doing this, and I tell myself it will be ok. If I need to cry, I cry. Because these things make me feel better.

We are humans and we were given the ability to feel emotions for a reason. If we were never supposed to get angry or cry, then the mechanisms for these emotions would never exist. I personally believe that these mechanisms help us deal with disappointments or anything that impacts us negatively.


Accept what is

I like to be in control. I like to create my own destiny and I get frustrated when I work really hard, put my all into it and it doesn’t work out the way I wanted it to. Have you felt this way?

One thing I’ve learnt time and again is that some things just aren’t in our control. No matter how hard we try, certain things will work out the way they are meant to work out.

The second step in dealing with a disappointment after letting your emotions flow is to accept what just happened. You tried your best but it didn’t work out.

It is not in your control and there’s nothing you can do about it. All the fretting in the world is not going to change anything. Just accept what is.

What I normally tell myself when I end up disappointed in a situation I have no control over is – whatever happens, happens for the best.

I have begun to accept that yes, we create our own destiny but I believe, I’m really beginning to believe, that there’s a greater force at work out there. Maybe someone or something is looking out for you or pulling the strings. We don’t fully understand the meaning of life or what truth the universe holds. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not one of those “ask the universe, and you’ll get it” kind of people. I strongly believe you have to work for what you want, but sometimes, it just doesn’t work. Even when all the variables were right. I am really beginning to believe that along with how we direct our lives, something else is directing our lives for the better.

It’s best to accept, after you have tried your best, that it wasn’t meant to be. And the fact that it didn’t work out is probably for the best, even if you don’t fully understand it.

Most times, when I look back in hindsight, I think, wow, I’m glad that didn’t work out.


Reason with yourself

One of the most important steps for me is to reason with myself. To find logic amongst all this emotion.

Why did it go wrong? What has this got to do with me? Could I have done something differently?

If you know you tried your best, this disappointment can’t possibly have anything to do with you.

I have a tendency to think, did I do something wrong? Especially, if another person is involved in it.

Sometimes, it has nothing to do with you and everything to do with the other person, but it’s difficult to accept this. I always feel that I must have said or done something wrong. This is something I’m trying to work on.

I always try my best, keep an open mind and if things still don’t go the way I wanted them to, I feel perhaps I did something I shouldn’t have. I talk myself through the entire situation and finally come to the conclusion that if I had to go back in time, there’s nothing I would have done differently so this wasn’t meant to be.

Sometimes, I do realise that actually, maybe I shouldn’t have done this. I then keep the lesson I’ve learnt for the future.

Is there a reason why it didn’t work out? Did I miss something?

I also tend to analyse the situation for something I might have missed. Maybe there’s a reason it didn’t work out. I try to find that reason. The more I analyse, the more I begin to see, that actually, it’s probably best that this disappointment happened.

You might think this is just a way to console oneself. Maybe it is. Maybe it isn’t. In the moment, I feel like I’m consoling myself, but when I look back in hindsight, I realise that that reason was a big deal and I’m glad things worked out the way they did.

What now? Is it the end of the world?

The last and final question I ask myself is, Is the world going to end now that things have worked out this way? The answer is a resounding NO.

Life goes on. There are so many wonderful things in life that you can’t let a small disappointment ruin your day. Plus life is short. Can you really let something or someone take away your one day or week or month when all they give you are disappointments? It’s not a fair deal.


Move on, Be happy

The final thing I do is to make plans for something to lift me up. I meet up with my friends, watch a movie, treat myself, take care of myself, maybe even have a dessert! It all sounds like therapy, I like to think of it as more as, life is so beautiful and it has so many things to offer. I’m not going to sulk when I could be enjoying all these wonderful things.

The most important thing to realise is life will always be full of ups and downs. We have to learn how to deal with the downs.

There is no right or wrong way to deal with a disappointment. Do whatever makes you feel better (in a way that does not harm others). I feel that in order to properly deal with a disappointment from my experience is to follow these four steps:

  • Let your emotions flow
  • Accept what is
  • Reason with your heart
  • Move on

The final thing to remember is that time heals all. If you try all the steps above and still feel pain, it’s ok. Know that after enough time has passed, the memory will fade and you will feel better.

Dealing with disappointments

I know it is easier said than done. I am trying to get over my own disappointment while I write this post, but I’m confident that I will feel better over time.

I wish you all a lovely weekend and I would love to hear about how you deal with your disappointments. Much love!

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