Handy Tips to Cope with Disappointment
“We would never learn to be brave and patient if there were only joy in the world,” - Helen Keller.
Disappointments can be quite painful though their magnitude may vary. Everyone experiences disappointments: Broken relationships, losing a job, life-threatening illness, death of a loved one, social snubs.
If we dont learn to handle disappointments, it could lead to depression, mental illness or even suicide. Life is all about learning lessons from disappointments and mistakes, transforming them to wisdom and personal growth.
1. Keep Hope Alive
Hope is one thing that will never disappoint. So hang on to hope. There is a saying in Tibetan, 'Tragedy should be utilized as a source of strength.' No matter what sort of difficulties, how painful experience is, if we lose our hope, that's our real disaster.
2. Let it out
Allow yourself to feel what you feel. It's perfectly fine to genuinely experience the emotion, be it anger or sorrow. Let it out and be with the emotions until you are ready to move on. Make important decisions and act upon them only once you are in a calmer state of mind.
3. Review Expectations
Once you have a true understanding of a disappointing event, take a good look at your expectations. Question and check whether your expectations actually serve the purpose. Your perceptions may not be the reality. Adjust your expectations to cope with the new reality.
4. Have a Broader Perspective
Try not to take everything personally. Be kind to yourself. Most of us tend to attribute negative life events to our own personal failures. When you take a disappointing event personally, it causes hindrance in the path of acquiring the wisdom to see things in a different light. It helps to self-reflect or talk to someone whom you trust. It will also help you regain clarity and recover from a negative life event.
5. Outcome is not a Setback
Let-downs, failures or any negative events in one's life have to be viewed as new opportunities for growth. Disappointments need to be perceived as stepping stones leading you to achieve your goals rather than taking you away from them.
6. Start a Journal
Writing down about painful experiences de-stresses and promotes healing. Just a word or flowing thoughts, vent in out on paper.
Disappointments are part of life. Instead of blaming yourself or pointing fingers at others, accept that you will continue to disappoint yourself and also that you will continue to be disappointed by others or events on which you have no control of. Differentiate between predictable and unavoidable disappointments and respond appropriately. Acceptance is liberating. It will enable you to see the silver lining in the cloud.
8. Moving Forward
It's not easy to deal with disappointments but moving ahead is not tough if you work hard on the steps mentioned above. Continue to have goals but never get attached to them as they are impermanent. Try to accept life as it is at the present moment. Dwelling upon past disappointments does not contribute to your personal growth. Embrace life as it is and live life to the fullest.
“Hold fast to dreams, For if dreams die Life is a broken-winged bird, That cannot fly.” Langston Hughes