How to Deal with Disappointment

To be honest, this post has been sitting in my drafts since early March. Mostly because 1. I had more inspiration to write other posts (it happens to all bloggers) and 2. I had to figure out actually how to deal with disappointment myself (it’s a bit of a process!)

Back in March, I got some disappointing news. Upon hearing that news, of course I felt a slew of emotions: sadness, frustration, hopelessness, doubt, anger. But what really rang true was disappointment. Things didn’t work out the way I had hoped & I was truly just… disappointed.

Disappointment is interesting. It’s a little more complex than other emotions & it’s honestly something that we will all feel (to varying degrees) throughout our lives. So here are a few things that helped me wrestle with disappointment. Hopefully some of these tips help! But of course, you know yourself best so always trust you have everything you need to take care of yourself. You got this.

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Feel all the feelings

Like I just said: disappointment is complex. It’s one of those emotions that is usually made up of a lot of other emotions. So first things first, just feel. Like, really really feel what you’re feeling. If you’re angry, scream. Vent. Curse. If you’re sad, cry your eyes out. Eat a whole pint of ice cream. If you’re frustrated, be f*cking frustrated. Don’t bottle it up, let it out instead. Depending on what made you disappointed in the first place may dictate which of your emotions is the “strongest” but that’s okay. Feel what you need to.

Make a list of things in your control

This of course goes back to my Type-A nature. The core of disappointment is that something doesn’t turn out how we hoped or planned. Thus, feeling disappointed often leads to feeling like we’re out of control. Something that helped me was making a list of tangible things that I could control. Some were directly related to what made me disappointed, and some weren’t. But just bringing to mind all the things that are in your control makes you feel a little more stable & grounded.

Don’t make any rash decisions

It’s veryyyy easy to want to do something/fix it/act out of emotion when you’re disappointed. I’m a do-er and a fixer by nature, so when I feel negatively/badly, I want to fix it right now. Do yourself a favor and don’t. Don’t make any rash decisions. I know feeling disappointed sucks & you don’t want to feel it, but trying to “fix” it with emotional, hasty decisions will only hurt you more. Just sit and be with the disappointment for a while (I know, it’s reallllly hard). It does dissipate, I promise.

Related: Type-A’s Guide on Going with the Flow

Be curious

Maybe this is because I’ve become a lot more self-reflective in the past couple years, but when I was feeling really disappointed, I decided to approach my feelings with curiosity. I tried to treat this event and my feelings as a way get to know myself better. Also, according to a cliché Pinterest quote I probably found, failure/disappointment is sometimes just life’s way of redirecting you. With that in mind, what can you learn from disappointment? What is life trying to move you towards (or away from?) Get curious about it. Explore the different possibilities and facets of your situation and your disappointment. Curiosity takes the edge off of disappointment and turn it into something more productive and positive.

Treat yourself with kindness

BE NICE TO YOURSELF. I put it in all caps because it’s important (and I need the reminder OFTEN). You’re hurting! You’re allowed to hurt! So treat yourself with kindness and understanding. If your friend were disappointed, how would you treat them? What would you say to them? Now flip it and treat yourself the same way. Practice self-care. Pick yourself up. Be kind to yourself (always) but especially in times of disappointment.

The good news is, like everything in life, this too shall pass & your disappointment is temporary. Have any other tips for getting over disappointment? Leave me a comment! &.

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6 thoughts on “How to Deal with Disappointment

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