Are You Letting Your Disappointments Destroy You?
This is part 2 of my 4-part series on how to deal with disappointment. If you haven’t, read Part 1: 3 Reasons Why Disappointment Is Good first.
How do you normally deal with disappointment? Do you block them out of your life? Do you sleep them off and hope that you will feel better when you wake up?
How You Should NOT Deal with Disappointment
Many people are caught like fish out of water when they face disappointment. Because they are not taught to properly deal with disappointment in school or in life, they deal with it in a destructive way instead. Do you deal with disappointments with any of these methods?
1. Numb yourself with other activities
The first negative way is to drown out your disappointment with random activities. Party, eat, sleep, go shopping, or play games. For some people, they turn to sex, alcohol, or even drugs. The goal here is to dive into random, mindless activities, to avoid being alone with disappointment.
While it’s okay to play games or sleep to shake off negative feelings, the problem comes when you use them excessively to deal with unhappiness, rather than face the problem head on.
Rebound relationships work on the same basis. The person tries to get over their previous partner by jumping into a new relationship, to avoid dealing with the pain of breakup.
While distracting yourself with other activities make you feel happy in the short run, they do not resolve the issue. Soon, you face another situation which leads to disappointment again. Instead of resolving the problem, you turn to more distractions. This results in a downward spiral.
2. Deny your goals
The second way is to block out your goals, pretending they don’t exist. On the outside, you pretend you don’t care. But deep down, you do care. You condition yourself not to set any expectation, since disappointment will not happen when there are no expectations.
For example, people who have been scarred by negative relationships tend to develop barriers to love. On the outside, they appear aloof and uninterested in love. On the inside though, they long to find their special someone. Because they fear getting hurt, they deny their desire for a relationship and refuse to let others into their lives. This denial catches up with them down the road and creates a backlash effect. Have you met such people before? They look like they don’t care, but on the inside, they do care. As they block out their desires, they become more miserable in the long run instead.
3. Give up on your goals
The third way is to give up on your goals. This is perhaps the worst of all 3 methods. While you long for your goals, you resign yourself to a fate that you will never reach them. You self-depreciate, devaluing your worth and thinking that you are not meant to achieve anything. You spend each day trying to convince yourself and others around you that you cannot achieve your goals, when they are fully within your reach.
What Happens When You Deal With Disappointments Destructively
If you have dealt with disappointments in the above manner, you are not properly dealing with them.
In part 1, I shared that one of the reasons why disappointment is good is because it represents passion for a cause. The greater your disappointment, the stronger your passion.
Whenever you try to drown out your disappointment, deny your goals, or even give up on them, you are rejecting who you are on the inside. You are denying your goals, your desires, your dreams, your vision, your real self – everything. These desires came about for a reason — and the reason is not for them to be denied. To quote Esther and Jerry Hicks from the book Ask And It Is Given, “If you have the ability to imagine it, or even to think about it, this Universe has the ability and the resources to deliver it fully unto you.”
When you deny your goals, you hollow yourself from inside out. You can try to pretend that everything is fine and lead your everyday life, but you cannot fool your subconsciousness. Every day, living feels like an empty act. Over time, you find yourself sinking from a state of disappointment to apathy. You live every day in a zombie-like manner, with no passion or zest. You become shriveled up on the inside: everything seems barren and empty.
The good news is, it doesn’t have to be this way. You are not alone in your disappointment. Everyone has faced disappointment at some point — your friends, family, teachers, managers, co-workers, and bosses. I have faced disappointments before as well, be it in love, health, relationships, or work.
Disappointment is not something exclusive to you. Even though disappointment is an emotion triggered without your conscious control, you can deal with it in a conscious manner. As long as you learn to address your disappointments properly and pick up from here, you can lead your life the way it is meant to be led — in alignment with your true passion and desires.
In the next part, I will share how to deal with disappointments constructively. Read Part 3: How to Deal With Disappointment
This is part 2 of my 4-part series on how to deal with disappointment.