How To Recover From Disappointment

Disappointment is Part of Life

Josh Hossler | 12/15/2020

Disappointment is part of life. We all experience it. Some of it may be small. Some of it may be life-changing. It can come from others or it can come from ourselves. Wherever it comes from, it can be debilitating if we don’t learn how to recover from it. Here are four productive things we can do to recover from disappointment:

1) ACKNOWLEDGE IT.

The first step to recovering from disappointment is simply acknowledging it. You can’t run from failure you have to embrace it. Failure to acknowledge disappointment, loss, regret, etc. will only allow it to linger and often spiral into further disappointment. Ask yourself why you’re disappointed? Tackle it rather than avoid it. What disappointment are you facing that you need to acknowledged?

2) LEARN FROM IT.

This sounds cliche but it is one of the most important things we can do when faced with disappointment. This is the difference between getting back up and staying down. Please hear me: WE WILL ALL FAIL – PERIOD! Disappointment, failure, even severe regrets will be part of each of our lives. So, the point is, it’s not a matter of when, but how. We will all fail so lets get past that. The great thing is failure is NOT FINAL if we learn from it. The best way to grow is to learn from failure. What can you learn from your most recent failure?

3) FLEX WITH IT.

Disappointment comes from unmet expectations. You expected one thing and it didn’t turn out that way. Being flexible means learning to adjust our expectations. This is a problem especially for those with perfectionistic or performance based tendencies. Some times we simply need to step back, relax, and let go of unrealistic expectations (life doesn’t have to, won’t be, and would be boring if it were always perfect). Where do you need to relax a little and be more flexible?

4) REFRAME IT.

What can trip us up though are the negative feelings, thoughts, and emotions that go along with it. It’s ok to feel those things and even healthy, but if we don’t keep those in balance, our feelings and perspective can become distorted. Instead of recognizing that we failed at something, we can begin seeing ourselves as failures and that simply isn’t true. Things get out of proportion and it’s important to get things back in balance.

The best way I know how to do this part is through: 1) connecting with good friends around me (they give me perspective), 2) looking at the big picture (get away for an hour, afternoon, or day), 3) reading my Bible (it keeps me grounded in the truth), and 4) prayer (God coaches me out of the slump and gives me a renewed purpose, calling, and hope – John 8:32 “Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.”).

What are some disappointments you’ve faced and what has helped you recover?

Jeremiah 29:11 “‘I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'”

Josh Hossler | Lead Pastor

Josh is the founding and Lead Pastor of Evident Church. He is passionate about helping people find their purpose and follow Jesus. Josh enjoys his family, preaching, leadership, writing, and is also is an adjunct professor of philosophy at Rochester University in Rochester Hills, MI. He and his wife Raelyn, have three daughters, AvaRae, AdaLyn, and AnaBel.

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