Overcoming Disappointment

Disappointments are proof that you’re trying

“The size of your success is measured by the strength of your desire and how you handle disappointment along the way.”
— Robert Kiyosaki

I began this week’s article on Sunday morning. I wasn’t planning to be up super early.

I’d planned a nice long lie-in.

But the snow clearers decided that 6am was the perfect time to come out by the swarm and clean up the downtown streets from yesterdays, all-day snowstorm.

Think metal scraping on concrete till it makes your teeth ache, and the continual beep beep of the warning systems and you’ll have some idea of how my morning greeted me.

I tried good thoughts.

Really I did.

“Safe sidewalks.

“The workers up before the crack of dawn to make the streets safe”

“Aren’t I so fortunate as to be home, not working today.”

It took the edge off.

For a moment.

But really, my dark inner grumblies were having none of it.

They were hung up on their expectation of peace and quiet this morning, and weren’t going to shut up about it anytime soon.

That’s the thing with disappointment

It’s a really uncomfortable feeling, it’s sticky and clings like a limpet.

Disappointment is an experience of feeling let down and somewhat defeated.

It’s complex.

You may not be sure whether to feel angry, frustrated, sad, or  impatient with yourself.

Disappointment hovers. It hovers at the front of your mind and niggles at the back.

Even when you know “you know” better, it can be hard to forget about.

The thing with disappointment is that it catches you unawares when you have set plans and expectations.

Here’s the thing about disappointment.

When you’re caught unawares, with unmet expectations, all kinds of thoughts come crashing over you in the moment.

It can feel like you’re drowning in negative emotion.

It’s tempting to blame everything and anything within sight.

All disappointments, big or small disturb your peace of mind.

When we continually stuff down feelings of disappointment, it can lead to feeling doubt, despair, depression, despondency and discouragement in the long-term.

And then, just when the drama subsides, and we begin to get our emotional footing back,

we can feel pretty stupid and petty for making such a fuss.

This is a good moment to stop, breathe, and slow down the drama.

Otherwise, the inner critics start playing a tune in your head about how pathetic you are or ridiculous to let such a little thing get you in a tizzy.

It can be a real rollercoaster of a ride while it’s happening.

I felt pretty silly myself this morning after I got over myself

Not one of my finer moments for sure!

However, I realized that I had been pushing myself through a difficult week, ignoring my feelings and just trying to “get things done.”

When we do this, mindlessly trying to push through frustrations, we are always going to set ourselves up with unrealistic expectations.

When we are incredibly disappointed, and things haven’t turned out as expected, it’s easy to feel very overwhelmed.

Give yourself permission to own the feeling of being disappointed.

Be open to the idea that perhaps you had specific expectations, and they may need a little adjustment.

Don’t make yourself wrong. Ask yourself, what would help me feel better right now.

Listen for the answer. And do that!

I am pretty sure this next couple of weeks is going to test us all as we attempt to do double duty.

Maintaining our normal lives, and adding all the extra work for the celebrations on top of that.

Expectations are run pretty high at this time of year, and small set backs and last minute plan changes can catch you off guard easily.

Neale Donald Walsch says it wonderfully, “Disappointment is temporary. Change your mind about what has disappointed you and you will change your life. All disappointment is just advantage looked at from the other side.”

So here’s a few more thoughts I hope will stand you in good stead about catching disappointment before it takes over, so you don’t fall down the rabbit hole!

With much love,


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