Coping With Disappointment
When things don’t go the way we expected them, we can often feel disappointed. We have invested our hopes into a certain outcome, and now we “lost”. It is an unavoidable part of life that sometimes things do not turn out the way we want them to turn out. Sometimes people whom we trusted let us down. Sometimes plans don’t work out the way we wanted them to. Sometimes things break down that shouldn’t. And it is easy and only natural to feel disappointed about these things.
But – and this is an important distinction we have to make -even though it is easy and natural, it is not necessary, or even unavoidable. It is important we have have high hopes, dreams and wishes. And of course we should believe in them. And even visualize a positive outcome so that we get the motivation and drive that is required to get there. But we must learn to manage our expectations so that we do not simply turn into a sinking ship when things do not work out. When you hope for a glorious victory, and what you get is a bitter defeat, it is easy to feel frustrated.
Reassessing the Situation
When the real world has given you the feedback that what you expected did not happen, then it is time that you reevaluate your situation and your approach. You probably need to do things differently in order to get what you are after. For example, if you are in love with a person, and you have tried all kinds of things to make that person fall in love with you too, but it just isn’t happening – does that mean that you should keep on trying? Maybe. But maybe it just means that you should ask yourself what it is that you really want. Maybe what you really want is not that person to be your partner – maybe what you are looking for is a happy, fulfilling relationship. And that is something you can get even if that particular person does not love you. It can be difficult to let go of your hopes and fantasies, but it won’t be nearly as difficult as constantly having to live with unrequited love.
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Ability To Respond To Changes
Again, it is good to have high hopes and expectations. But even when you cultivate them, also have a “Plan B” – something that you can do when Plan A does not work out the way you hoped it would. Plan B does not mean that you have to lower your expectations – it just means that you have alternatives at your disposal.
You must be able to pick yourself up after a defeat, get your spirits high and move on. Just like the old Japanese proverb that says: “Fall down seven times, get up eight.” You must be able to clear your mind from the emotional fog of disappointment and plan and execute your next move. And in order to do so, you need to be able to effectively cope with disappointments.