The Perks of Being Disappointed

It’s a universal experience to be let down. But disappointment is good, whether you are disappointed because you cannot have something or because you don’t know what you want.

I searched the Internet for its definition and etymology when thinking about disappointment. Google’s suggested search was for “Disappointment island.” I couldn’t resist clicking on it. Disappointment Island is one of seven Auckland Islands located off the coasts of New Zealand. It was also the site of numerous shipwrecks.

The number of wrecks in this region was so high that the New Zealand Government regularly visited the islands and established depots stocked with clothing, food, and tools to help castaways waiting for rescue. The disappointment of being shipwrecked was manageable with provisions.

It is also the story’s moral: disappointment can be dealt with if prepared. It is an experience that we all share. Finding ways to deal with disappointment is not only important but also necessary.

Three types of disappointment

  1. The Problem of Not Getting What You Want

Not getting what you want is a common source of disappointment. You might not be able to find your favorite peanut butter brand at the supermarket or get the gift you wanted for your birthday or Christmas. didn’t receive that gadget you wanted.

You could face much more serious consequences: not receiving the promotion at work you hoped for, not being accepted into your dream college, losing an election, or having someone reject you when you propose to marry them. It’s also possible to get what you do not desire. Nobody wants a flat, and nobody wants stomach flu. Nobody wants to fail out of school, have cancer, or be arrested.

Dejection can be accompanied by anger, sadness, emptiness, or melancholy. Your disappointment may be expressed with stiff upper lips, but you will likely have a quivering mouth.

You may say that the venue you booked for a lecture, concert, or other event was only half-full. Someone might ask you, “What were you expecting?” You still need to be asked what you expected. It means you’ve had unrealistic expectations. You may not have done enough to promote the event and should have been expecting poor attendance.

Expectations and disappointment have a strong connection. Although expectations may be present at the moment, they are often oriented toward the future. They set us up for disappointments that will come. It may be helpful to examine how your thoughts about the past, present, and future are related to disappointment and expectation.

We can learn much about ourselves and others by examining disappointment more closely. Expectations can lead to disappointment. Blame compounds our disappointments. This is evident in even the smallest of blames or judgments. You may make a dinner reservation, but the restaurant needs help finding it and has no tables. Someone has to pay for it!

Humor is an effective way to deal with many small disappointments. Is there anything you can replace the hot sauce that you ran out of on your burrito? It’s almost funny that you are so obsessed.

A disappointing vacation can become a source of laughter later. Our family laughs about “death march” or hikes that have gone wrong. Can you find a little humor in these situations?

A daily disappointment is usually linked to the failure of a pattern. It’s frustrating when you cannot follow your daily routine. This frustration is the kind of disappointment we all experience. It’s frustrating if you have worn the same style and brand of sneakers for ten years, and now they are no longer made. Not getting what you are used to is also a wake-up call. Look around to see what’s available. You may want to avoid trying a new drink in the coffee shop. You’re half asleep and enjoying your coffee. It would help to consider other options when they stop selling your favorite dark roast coffee. It can be refreshing to experience disappointment.

  1. Get What You Want

What about the disappointment you feel when you get what your heart desires? What’s the problem if you inherit a million bucks, get engage to your true lover, sign a book contract, or win an election? A bagel is what you want. You get a bagel. What is disappointing about this? We keep raising the bar. We may be satisfy with something today, but not tomorrow.

In the tale of The Fisherman and His Wife, a poor fishing man catches a magical fish who begs the fisherman for help in exchange for granting a wish. The fisherman cannot think of anything to wish for, so he returns the fish and goes home. His wife has many ideas when she hears about the fisherman’s story. Since they don’t have anything to eat, a loaf could  used. The fish grants the wish, but soon after, the wife wants to build a nice home, replacing their shack. She wants a mansion and then a palace. Finally, she wants the sun to rise and the Moon to set. She wants to be God. You can imagine the next step. The fish is disappoint when she hears that.

The fish that grants wishes disappears, and the husband and wife of the fisherman are back at their shack. This fable touches on the real desires of life, just like so many others. It’s not wrong to improve your life. But we often need to appreciate the things we have given. As our appetite increases, we may be disappoint again and again.

We may question why we wanted something so great if it fails to meet our expectations. Again, the word expectation! The item purchased does not bring the satisfaction hoped for. Even if you get what you want, it can be disappointing because we cannot anticipate unexpected life events. Media often tells stories of people who were miserable after winning the lotto. They need to prepare for scammers and family members who want to cut off their winnings. While winning an election can be exciting, politicians face many difficulties once in office. Many successful celebrities may have committed suicide because they weren’t prepare for the challenges and disappointments of success.

You may also worry about losing your possessions if you get what you want. The volatility of stock markets and bad investments are all reasons to be disappoint.

What we believe will satisfy us tomorrow may not. We can become chronically unappreciative of what we have as we increase our expectations.

  1. Uncertain of what you want

Then there is the ongoing disappointment of not knowing what you want. You can’t have anything else. We’ve heard that when one door shuts, another opens. But we worry about the door about to close. We don’t wish to make a mistake. We are fundamentally disappoint that we have to make a decision. Why can’t we get the thing on a plate?

Even the decisions that are not the best for us can lead to personal growth. Many people talk about how their life has been transform by overcoming adversity. In retrospect, it is easier to see the value of disappointment. You may be surprise that five years after not getting your dream job, you are in a career you would never have expected. When faced with major challenges or setbacks, we must find the strength to overcome them without losing hope.

It can be paralyzing when we are fundamentally disappoint. We blame ourselves and sometimes those we work and live with. The judgmental attitude is express by phrases like “I’m disappoint in you!” You may say, “I really screwed up,” or feel the urge to give up. We feel unworthy or incapable of achieving anything. We are not only disappoint but also discourage. This means that we have lost our courage.

How can we keep going when things don’t work out? Henry David Thoreau’s 1838 journal entry, “If we are quiet and open enough, there will be compensation for every disappointment,” is a great example of a conservative perspective.

We can’t avoid disappointment, but it does not have to be crippling. We can learn to deal with disappointment if we even have a small inkling that our failures have value. It is unacceptable to give up. Shutting down is more harmful than avoiding risks, being committ, or being uncertain. Martin Luther King said: “There is no such thing as a deep disappointment if there isn’t great love.”

Let us begin by valuing ourselves and increasing our empathy towards others. We will then champion love over apathy. Take a risk! Risk disappointment! We can be proud that we are willing to accept both failure and success.


Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button