5 ways to deal with disappointment better

You're bummed out. But don't start second-guessing yourself

Published September 10, 2013 8:29PM (EDT)

  (Dariush M/Shutterstock)
(Dariush M/Shutterstock)

Man must be disappointed with the lesser things of life

before he can comprehend the full value

of the greater.

Edward G. Bulwer-Lytton

Everyone faces disappointments in life, both large and small. Unfortunately, many of people choose to sit around and complain or whine about their problems to the immense irritation of others. While it is certainly important to acknowledge your disappointments and not just ignore them, but how do you do it effectively, without being a huge nag to everyone else? The answer lies in learning constructive ways to acknowledge disappointments. Disappointment can help build up character and patience if you allow it to. Learning to deal with your disappointments constructively can make you a stronger person in the end.

One of the first things you will need to do in learning to deal with disappointment better is to recognize your old coping strategies. Everyone has them. Do you reach for a pint of your favorite ice cream or withdraw into a room all alone? Do you get drunk and try to forget? Once you have learned to recognize your old strategy and accept that it is not working, it is now time to create a new one.

Here are 5 tips for effectively dealing with your disappointments:

1. Acknowledge what you are feeling. You can honestly express the emotions that you are experiencing feeling without blaming others or punishing everyone in sight. This is about how you feel about the situation, not about other people. Articulate your feelings without attacking others. Always be respectful, but do not be afraid to let them know precisely how you feel.

There is no one right or wrong way to feel. Your feelings are valid and if you do not voice your opinion then you will begin to harbor resentment and stress yourself out. Be honest with yourself about how you really feel about the situation.

2. Put and keep things in perspective. Even the tiniest of disappointments can seem monumental at first. But once you have expressed your hurt, frustration, or anger, take a step back and look at the larger picture. How much of an effect is this disappointment going to have on you tomorrow, next week, or next year?

Breathing deeply is an easy thing to do, but one of the first things we forget to do when stressed. Take a deep breath and go for a walk to get some space and time to help put your disappointment into its proper perspective. Taking time to reflect and step away from a situation will help calm your nerves so that you will be better able to handle the disappointment.

3. Do not doubt yourself. Sometimes disappointment can make you feel like a total failure. You may wonder why these things “keep” happening to you, or you may begin to think that you were not being wise to get your hopes up in the first place. But none of that is the truth! Do not succumb to this thinking. Do not allow yourself to give in to these negative thoughts!

Disappointment is not unique to you. Everyone has been disappointed at some point in their life. Instead of beating yourself up, think about what you could have been done differently and always, always, always learn from the experience.

4. Look for solutions or compromises. Contrary to popular belief, you cannot have your way all the time, but often there will be a second option that is agreeable to each party.

Again, take a few deep breaths, relax, and look for the “silver lining.” It is possible to find something positive in almost every situation.

5. Reassess and make adjustments, if necessary. Sometimes when you experience disappointment, it may be a sign that you need to re-examine your priorities. Depending upon the degree of disappointment that you are facing, you may need to make minor or major changes to your life. Learn to be flexible. Refocusing your attention on your new goals will help you work through your disappointment.

Do not give up!!!

Any person who has had even the smallest degree of success in life has faced some disappointments. Winners just don’t quit. They learn from their failures, mis-steps and disappointments and go on to achieve their goals. You should not allow disappointment to lower your self-confidence. This not to say that you need to gloss over your feelings, but that you can learn how to deal with your disappointments effectively, so that you will be able to move on to bigger and better things sooner.

You can become your own biggest motivator! Never underestimate the power of encouraging yourself by saying, “I can do this. I can make it. I will get through this!”


Photo Credit: hometownzero via Compfight cc



Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Compromise Disappointment Emotions Overcoming Obstacles Self-help