One of the hardest lessons I’ve had to grapple with as an adult is how to deal with disappointment. Disappointment is really the crux behind every quarter-life and mid-life crisis. It’s having to reconcile the gap between where you wanted to be in life and where you actually are. The bridge between these two schisms leads to disappointment. The feeling of being disappointed in yourself will eventually come for you. If you hold on to disappointment for too long then it can lead to anxiety and or depression. But it doesn’t have to be this way. It is how we bounce back from disappointments that can make all the difference in our lives. In this blog post, we will explore tips and strategies to help you bounce back from disappointment.
Feel Your Feels and Grieve
Grief is not just centered around the loss of a person but can also be applied to anything that we place value on. You can grieve a person, an event, or a thing. Our goals and dreams are things we placed our hope in. Anything we place our hope in is where our confidence lies. When we lose confidence in a thing because circumstances didn’t allow it to come to fruition then we have to grieve the thing that didn’t come to pass. Emotions surrounding grief involve distress, anguish, fear, and shame. It’s important not to suppress those emotions and take time to sit with them. Society wants us to quickly move on to the next thing or opportunity before we fully process the loss and its impact. Don’t allow anyone to encourage you to push past your feelings. I’ve found that whenever I try to suppress an emotion it takes me longer to bounce back. Instead, I feel what I need to feel in whatever healthy manner I need to express it in however long it takes me to be ready to move forward. Engage in self-care practices and if necessary, consider speaking to a therapist or counselor who can help you process your emotions and develop coping strategies.
Be Kind To Yourself and Give Yourself Grace
While unpacking your emotions around your disappointment it’s important to engage in critical self-talk and not negative berating. Sometimes we can be our own worst critics and really get out of pocket at the way we talk to ourselves. Being critical means taking an objective view of the setback and assessing mishaps without guilt and shame. Ask yourself, “Did I do my best?” If the answer is yes then reframe your experience and give yourself grace. If the answer is no then critically assess the reasons why, make a plan to do better and still give yourself grace. Giving yourself grace is an acknowledgment that you are not perfect and that you can forgive yourself for mistakes and mishaps in a loving and healthy way.
Reframe and Replan
It’s important to stay grounded in the reality of the situation and out of the shoulda, coulda, woulda. Staying in a negative loop is daunting and counterproductive to achieving your goals. Maybe your goal didn’t fully come to fruition, but perhaps some goals were partially completed or a talent or skill was discovered. Every disappointment can teach us something. Take time to reflect on the situation and identify what you can learn from it. Ask yourself questions such as, “What could I have done differently?” or “What did I learn from this experience?” Reframing setbacks into lessons allows you to set a new plan in motion with experienced knowledge. Learning from the experience can help you avoid making the same mistakes in the future and grow as a person.
Disappointment is a natural part of life, and how we bounce back from it can make all the difference. By accepting your feelings, reframing your mindset, taking action, learning from the experience, seeking support, setting new goals, and practicing resilience, you can bounce back from disappointment and move forward in your life. Every disappointment is an opportunity to learn and grow, Remember, whatever is meant for you will never miss you. That means that everything you plan and hope for will happen for you.