Dealing with disappointment

Finding it difficult to deal with disappointments?

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“Ways to Deal With Disappointments and Build Resilience”

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Have you found it difficult to overcome disappointment?

Do you sense a loss of power when faced with disappointment?

Do you find it difficult to think clearly when confronted with failure?

When we are trying to recover from disappointing news or life events, we can do certain things that could provide us with a sense of resilience based on our past experiences.

Dealing with disappointment

Since all of us at some point during our life will face disappointment, some things you can do will help you prepare to handle it and ensure that it doesn’t derail your ultimate success.

How you manage your reaction to disappointment is an important skill. Every one of us will face some sort of disappointment in our career and life. However, how one reacts may separate those who eventually reach their goals and succeed from those who do not.

For example, when we are faced with career disappointment at work, how we react is often noted, labeled, or judged.

If someone who doesn’t get what he/she wants reacts by getting angry, shouting, sulking, or withdrawing his/her performance, they could incur a costly label that will stick to them for long.  As a result, he/she may be passed over for the next raise or promotion.

However, if we react to disappointments or failures with resilience, this attribute will likely help us in the long run. You will also benefit from the inner strength that you will use in times of disappointment.

Gaining Emotional intelligence requires us to gain perspective on life’s disappointments.

Of course, all failures or disappointments are not equal. A bad traffic day is not as bad as a day on which one learns of some terminal illness. Building a perspective helps us face and measure the next disappointment or challenge life may bring to our doorsteps.

The competency of resilience will help us in all aspects of our lives; both personal and professional.

Here are some points for you to consider.

  1. Time –  You would have experienced generally time lessens the intensity of our disappointments.  That is the reason for the phrase “time heals”.  However, there may be an occasional exception. For example, perhaps when you were in high school you wouldn’t have applied yourself and worked hard and didn’t care at that time. Today when you look back, you wish you had worked harder so that you could have gone on to become an engineer or anything that you regret now.
  2. Focus – The more we focus on our failure or disappointments, the stronger it becomes. Replacing our thoughts about it with positive aspects of our lives helps us temper down our emotional reactions to the disappointing events.
  3. ThoughtsChanging one’s thoughts is an important strategy for improving our emotional responses to negative life events and can go a long way in contributing to our resilience. It is the key to building emotional intelligence.
  4. Control  – It is important to look at how rational we are while dealing with our disappointments.  About what is healthy and that which is not.  While examining our failures or disappointments, it would be meaningless to keep trying hard to change external circumstances that are not under our control.  However, it would definitely help if we can start looking at those which are under our control; that about which we can do something.  This would help in getting a different outcome the next time around.  You would have found that most of us get into the habit of ‘externalizing’ all that happens in our lives.  That only leads us to feelings of frustration.  Start by looking at what is under your control and that you can influence.
  5. Learning  – Spending some time learning from the mistakes can help us avoid facing the same disappointments in the future.  The easy way to do that is to ask “What can I learn from this?” or “What is this event trying to teach me?”.

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