The pain of disappointment is real.
There’s no way to avoid it or run away from it. At the end of the day, regardless of how many good things happen in our lives, the not-so-good things find their way to us, shattering everything we know and believe.
Disappointment can sometimes feel so overwhelming that it can literally take over our entire day. We get stuck in the whys and fail to see the silver lining.
We might think that in order to avoid disappointment, we must not build any expectations. But let’s be honest, it’s not that easy (and sometimes impossible). As human beings, we strive for happiness and hope. We’d do anything to avoid feeling pain. Even if we think we have lowered our expectations, when push comes to shove, we can’t dismiss or stop the fire that rages within us.
So how can we work through these dismal feelings? How can we rationalize unprecedented events?
Today, I asked our readers how to get over disappointment. Some comments made me laugh; others made me sob.
Here are some comments that have personally captivated me:
1. “Get a dog.” ~ Jennifer Moro Young (I have three dogs, and I must admit they make things so much easier for me!)
2. “When young easy, when an adult difficult. Yet we must learn to forgive and move on. Where it becomes very difficult, this type requires fasting and prayer.” ~ Michael John Terry (Forgiveness is vital. We can never move on if we don’t forgive others.)
3. “Eat.” ~ Martin Mullan (This comment cracked me up. I’m an emotional eater, so I do eat when I’m feeling anxious or upset.)
4. “Just keep going about your day, do what you do…eventually as the days go by, you forget about it.” ~ Christy Wilson-White (I replied to this comment saying that it’s funny how some things stop being important and fade away with time. Time might not heal our wounds, but it does lessen the intensity of our pain.)
5. “Keep moving forward…keep your face towards sunshine and know that nothing, whether good or bad, lasts forever.” ~ Jess Gonzalez (Amen. Impermanence is inevitable; we need to make peace with it.)
6. “Time, allow yourself to feel all that you feel and let it run through your system and in time it will get easier.” ~ Thomas Janak (Yas!)
7. “I almost always have to cry, then I shake it off and get to plan B.” ~ Sheryl Renee (Agreed. Feel it all, baby.)
8. “Whip cream and chocolate sauce.” ~ Derek Walter (This comment is funny, but it’s also true. Having chocolate might actually reduce stress and make you happier. Eat it in moderation, though!)
9. “Ruminate for about 6 months until a bigger, fresher disappointment takes over the realestate in my brain. Isn’t that what everyone does?!” ~ Kate Jax (I have to agree. Lol.)
10. “Consider that things may always happen a certain way for a reason… And even if I can’t see that reason clearly yet, maybe I will someday.” ~ Kira Eve Ross (I, too, believe that everything happens for a reason. We just have to wait and see what’s in store for us.)
11. “My antidote for all is cleaning and laundry. I think about the situation as I’m working when I’m done working the problem doesn’t seem so big plus I’ve got a clean home and my laundry is done!!” ~ Eileen Vanpatten (I just had to share this one.)
12. “First, I allow myself to feel sad, bummed, pissed…whatever comes up. Then, I use the ‘if not for’ concept. If not for this event, or job, or relationship turning out as it did, I wouldn’t have had an even more wonderful experience. I look at disappointments as a chance for do-overs.” ~ Edie Weinstein (Edie is one of our consistent authors, and I love her infinite wisdom!)
13. “Open your heart, dive into the disappointment and breakthrough to the gratitude that’s waiting on the other side of the pain.” ~ Jo Anne (This comment is my new mantra.)
14. “Think about the ‘why you wanted/needed’ that thing. Maybe it wasn’t meant to be because it was something you were meant to do. If it was something you wanted/needed then refocus, start your plan b. Science is trial and error, invention is failures and then successes. The Human experience is taking the good with the bad.” ~ Adam Garringer (Thank you, Adam!)
15. “You keep standing, you keep moving forward you keep showing up for yourself and those that care…” ~ Len Francesca (Yes. We must remain kind and willing even in difficult times.)
There are many other comments that tickled my little heart, but the point is feel your feelings, sit with the disappointment, be grateful, move forward, and…eat.