Thursday, May 29, 2008

Working effectively with disappointment

I often find myself recommending to students and clients that they normalize disappointment. The prevailing culture tells us that there's something wrong with disappointment - that it's an aberration. Disappointment, however, happens to 100% of the population. Absolutely everyboday experiences it.

Over on the "Spirituality and Practice" website there's a short article about it. There's also an e-course you can sign up for that will help you work skillfully with disappointment. Here's one suggestion:
Ask yourself, what am I disappointed about? Name your disappointments, and then let them go. Do not keep replaying them over and over in your mind. If necessary, forgive someone who has hurt or disappointed you. Also, forgive yourself for being disappointed. Remember, disappointment is a natural response to difficulty. The key is to not let it rule your life.
It's also helpful to use each occasion of disappointment to experience compassion for everyone else in the world who's feeling disappointed at that very minute.

1 comment:

  1. Accepting and normalizing disappointment seems contrary to human nature. It takes mindfulness, that's for sure. I don't think I'd ever thought of it before -- thanks, Ellie.


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