Recovering from Disappointment

Disappointment is defined as the result of a failed hope or desire one has of something or someone.  Simply put, disappointment is the result of unmet expectations.

An expectation is a plan or requirement that one considers to be likely, certain, and reasonable. 

Expectations are plans established within one's mind for how things will go and how people will behave; but when things don't happen how we supposed they should or expected they would,  disappointment occurs, and it can be devastating.

I believe Matt 7:1 speaks on the proper to handle when things don't happen like we thought they would.  Matt 7:1 tells us not to judge.  Plain and simple, we are not to criticize someone's decisions, failures and faults - not unless we want to be treated  in this way.  Being critical  is like throwing a dart which bypasses the intended target, and boomerangs back around to strike the one who threw it.   Using our voices to criticize makes others more aware and less forgiving of our mistakes.  We ALL have shortcomings, so it's best to extend to others the grace we need to receive from time to time.

Because no one is perfect, disappointment will occur from  time to time .  Even so, there are some things we can do to minimize unnecessary hurt in our relationships.

  1. Be self-aware (Know what you expectations of the other person . How can someone meet your expectation(s) if YOU don’t even know what they are?

  2. Clearly communicate your expectations to others.   After discovering /realizing what it is you need,  make others aware. How can you hold someone responsible for expectations that have not been communicated?  No one is a mind reader. Honest conversations prevent hurtful situations.

  3. Make sure the expectations have been agreed upon.  Has the other person agreed to be responsible and held accountable? Be sure to ask them, and get a definite answer.  All relationships are a deal, or a transaction of some sort.  Many of us are comfortable handling business and marketplace relationships like this;  yet, we are reluctant to speak up when it comes to  interpersonal  matters .  It may be a slightly uncomfortable at first, but taking these steps will go a long way to preventing misunderstandings and disappointments which may leave you feeling like you got "a raw deal", or the short end of the stick". 

  4. Place relationships & expectations in proper perspective. At the end of the day, even if we do all of this, the truth is, relationships are made up of less-than-perfect people, so disappointment still may occur.  Should it happen, the important thing is to deal with it and not get stuck there.