10 Ways To Better Deal With Disappointment

Written by Gilberto Rosas on November 7, 2016

5 min  read

One of the worst things to happen is to expect something to happen just the way you want it only for the exact opposite to happen. That’s life and that sort of thing happens more often than not. Everyone encounters disappointing situations but the ones that deal with it best are the ones who view the disappoint differently. While others sulk in the disappointment waiting for someone to save them from this bad feeling, here are 10 ways to save yourself from disappointment.

1. Let go of all expectations

This is something that can be found in Buddhist philosophy and there’s a reason why this piece of advice has stood the test of time. Let go of any expectations you may have. This is not to say don’t expect big things from yourself or don’t dream big. The truth is not as black and white as you think. It is perfectly fine to have big dreams. The only problem comes when you take action on those dreams and you become attached to the outcome. This is especially true when it comes to anything outside of your control such as other people and situations that you may face throughout your day. If you hold onto that expectation you have of others, you will find yourself putting your inner peace at the whims of others because their actions will dictate how you feel.

2. Forgive yourself for past mistakes

We’ve all had failures and regrets throughout our lives. You cannot go through life without making a couple mistakes here and there. It’s a part of life but you know what’s also a part of life? Learning and growing. Behind every tragic mistake is a great life lesson. It might just be that the lesson you learned was the lesson to take you to the next level in your life but you would not have gotten there without learning this crucial lesson. Instill the habit of becoming grateful for not only the good, but the not so good as well.

3. The 5 by 5 rule

You’re only on this Earth for so long so it doesn’t really matter all that much if a little milk spilled? When it comes to situations like these I like to implement the 5 by 5 rule. If it won’t matter in 5 years then don’t spend longer than 5 minutes worrying about it. The longer you worry about petty situations, the more you get distracted from what is truly important in your day. You have big goals and aspirations, is it really in your best interest to worry about how something that didn’t turn out like you wanted. Have a purpose and vision that makes you feel as though diverting even a minute would be wasting precious time from getting where you want to be.

4. Don’t try to change people

We all have an inherent need to help and contribute to others. Recall the last time you helped someone in need. You may have noticed that it felt good to help and were much more prone to help the next time around. This help may only come as a problem when it comes in the form of unsolicited advice. Some lessons people have to learn the hard way and on their own because ultimately those will be the most impactful lessons. Everyone is going through their own progression in life. Think back to yourself five years ago or even 10 years ago. You can think of a couple mistakes you made but it those mistakes that were never repeated because of the harsh way that you had to learn it and it might just have been the only way you would have learned it.

5. Only give advice if asked

This relates back to what was mentioned before. You might find yourself in a similar situation. You’re friend might be telling you a problem he’s having and it might just be the same problem you’ve had in the past and you just want to blurt and tell him what you wish you could’ve heard back when you’re struggling with that same problem. So you blurt it out and it’s received negatively. Sometimes people just want to be heard and understood. So give them that and then if they ask you, let them know what you’ve been wanting to tell them. Remember that you want to give value to people and not force value because if you force onto them, it will be perceived as the complete opposite of what you intended.

6. Be the change where you want it

If you’re an environment lacks certain qualities, norms, and values then embody those by being the example and eventually that same behavior will permeate to everyone in the group. It works. If you’re constantly surrounded by people who complain and gossip, how likely do you think it is that you’ll do the same as well. Very likely, especially if they’re close to you.

7. Focus on the process

Having a grand vision for your future is great but the pitfall can come when you have the vision but you hold onto it and expect the result sooner than what is realistic. Everything takes time. The greater the vision, the more steps it takes to get there. Certain things must happen before you arrive to your goal. Having said that, a much better approach is to focus on laying the best brick today so that it adds to making a strong and solid wall that can’t be torn down. It is very disappointing to not see results right away but when you understand that what you want is inevitable so long as you keep going and you approach every step with your best effort.

8. Do what you love

Ever notice how when you do what you love, you are in such a great mood that almost nothing can bring you down. When doing something you love, you put yourself in the optimal state of joy and happiness which is always the best way to operate from when dealing with inconvenient or unfortunate situation. One of the best ways to get out of the dampening feeling of disappointment is to do the activity that makes you absolutely happy and makes time fly by. It will only make you feel better ad forget about the situation you’ve been thinking about.

9. Choose your inner circle carefully

The people that you surround yourself with consistently have a huge impact on your thoughts, actions, and behaviors not only in the future but in the present and what you think and do in the present will undoubtedly affect your future so pick and choose your close friends carefully. If you’re surrounded by people who are constantly letting you down, then its time to make a switch in the people you surround yourself with. A big factor in the quality of your life is the quality of your relationships. Ever heard “happy wife, happy life”?

10. Adapt to the unexpected

If there is anything that is sure in this life, it’s change. Change is happening all around us at all times and sometimes it might take a while to how itself but be sure that it’s coming and it will most likely not be convenient for you. The first step in adapting to change is accepting that it is there. There are things in life that are just out of your control…and that’s okay. You only need to have control over yourself. Begin to shift your mentality to that of constant growth because only then change will not be something that surprises but rather something you already expect like an old friend returning to you. In moments of crisis, time has shown that it is those who adapt the best, that do the best.

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