I’m willing to bet that someone has let you down, recently. Am I right? This kind of thing probably happens to you far more often than you care to admit. Dealing with disappointment is a part of life that we all must learn to navigate-especially if we want to have successful relationships with others.
In fact, just the other day I went out of my way to make a connection with someone, and was vulnerable in sharing a part of “my story.” Guess what? They acted like they didn’t care. It was almost as if I were invisible and didn’t even exist to them. That experience served to remind me of 5 key things to remember when I’m feeling “let down” by others:
1. I need to communicate my expectations clearly – It’s easy to feel as though I’ve been clear in my expectations, because after all, they’re clear to me. However, I must be careful not to just assume that the other person knows what I’m expecting from them. Because after all, you know what happens when you assume… 🙂
2. I need to beware of unrealistic expectations – When I feel as though I’ve been let down by someone, it’s often because I’ve created a picture perfect scenario in my own heart and mind. But the reality is, life is not picture perfect-it’s flawed because of our humanity. I’m in no way saying that we should “settle” for mediocrity in life, but we simply must remember that humans are imperfect.
3. If I haven’t told them that I feel let down, they’re not going to know – I can “sulk” all I want to, but if I keep my disappointment to myself then I have no one to blame but myself. If I fail to tell the other person how I feel, then the relationship will become inauthentic. It’s impossible to have healthy relationships without authenticity at their core.
4. Ultimately, it’s my problem – When someone lets me down it’s easy to become “the victim.” The temptation is to begin blaming that person for how I feel, or how I am behaving. But at the end of the day, I’m responsible for my own feelings, actions, and attitude. No one else is! And I must remember that I’m accountable to God for how I treat others, regardless of how badly I feel they have offended or hurt me.
5. I’ve got to get over it and move on – The sooner I deal with my issue of being let down, the sooner I can begin to move forward. Remaining “stuck” in the past cannot be an option if I want to experience life to the fullest. And to quote Vince Gill, “There ain’t no future in the past.” Refusal to move past my hurt feelings will only serve to harden my heart, which will lead to the deterioration of my relationships with others, and ultimately affect my relationship with God, too.
So, there you have it-some thoughts on how to deal with disappointment in life. Perhaps you’ve got something else to add to the list-something that you’ve discovered along your journey that helps you to move on when people let you down. I’d love for you to share it by leaving a comment on this blog post.
Think about it.