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7 Smart Ways to Deal With Disappointments

Updated on January 24, 2018

How to Deal With Disappointments

Not letting the setback dominate you is one way to deal with disappointments
Not letting the setback dominate you is one way to deal with disappointments


Dealing with life’s disappointments is very important because learning to deal with them can help you to maintain good mental health, whereas failure to deal with them effectively can have a negative effect on your mental health and that may cause you to develop mental health disease such as depression.

So, how do you deal with disappointments in life? How do you deal with disappointments in a relationship? How do you deal with being disappointed?

I suffered a series of disappointments over a period of time that have taught me valuable lessons—my uncle who was working on securing employment for me died after I finished my University education. This was followed by a protracted illness, a failure to secure gainful employment, the development of a humiliating disease that has made it difficult for me to socialize, and struggles in my attempt to build a successful writing career.

In this article, I want to show you how to deal with disappointments so that you can have good mental health, and so that you can go on living a fruitful life after you suffer terrible disappointments.

Now, what are some of the things you can do?

Do Not Let The Disappointment Dominate You

Memories of the opportunities you have lost may come flooding back, and you may question yourself as to whether you did all that you could have done so that you could have taken full advantage of the opportunity you lost.

Additionally, you may be tempted to torture yourself by accusing yourself of causing the disappointment by not doing something right, or by thinking that if you had done something differently, things would have been different and you could have gotten the opportunity you wanted.

However, you will only waste your time by thinking “What if I had done this…” or “What if I had done that…” This will only make you feel even more miserable as you think about things you can never change.

Rather, just reflect on valuable lessons you learned and resolve that you will go on living so that you can keep focused on the future, which will prevent you from engaging in habits that may destroy you, such as drinking and taking drugs.

To do this, you may say something such as this regularly, “I may have lost this opportunity, but my whole life is still ahead of me. There is hope for the future. So, I will live. Better days will come. Things will turn around. I have to make the best of the life that is ahead of me. I won’t let this disappointment dominate me. I will move on.”

Choose To Be Positive About The Situation

Psychologists say that we have two conflicting desires when we face problems—the temptation to be negative, to shrink back and quit on life, to give in to cowardice, bitterness and self-pity, or the challenge to be positive, to move forward through struggle, effort, courage, and perseverance.

You can choose to be negative about the disappointment you have faced, or you can decide to look at the bright side of things. When you choose to be positive about the disappointment, you will be able to think clearly and constructively about the next steps you will take to move forward in life.

On the other hand, when you choose to get angry or when you become impatient, you may act recklessly without thinking, which may increase the likelihood that you may make wrong choices such as taking solace in drinking or abusing drugs.

So, how can you be positive when you have been hurt so badly? You can do this by talking positively to yourself. When negative thoughts come into your mind which tempt you to quit, say something such as this to yourself, “Isaac, yes the disappointment hurts so badly. I am very angry that I did not get that job. However, I must show character now. This is a chance for me to grow up, a chance for me to learn how to handle disappointments in life so that I will be able to handle the disappointments that I will face later in life. I have learned lessons from this experience and I will let those lessons guide me in the future.”

Look At The Big Picture

When you are disappointed, especially when the opportunity you lost was a golden opportunity or if it was a big, promising opportunity, you may feel that you have come to the end of your life, that no new opportunities may ever open up to you again and that can make you feel despondent about the future. This can lead to anxiety, which canincrease your risk of getting diseases such as heart disease.

Therefore, remind yourself of some of the good things that have happened to you in the past. It will keep you hopeful and that will help you to look forward to the future, which will save you valuable time you would have otherwise used to grumble, murmur, and wallow in pity.

So, look at the big picture by doing this simple exercise:

  • Grab a pen and a journal and create two columns in the journal.
  • Label the first column “Disappointments I Have Faced In The Past,” and label the second column “How I Moved On After These Disappointments.”
  • Write down 10 significant disappointments you have faced in the past six months in the first column, and how you moved on by recalling the new opportunities that opened up to you in the second column.
  • Ruminate upon it to remind yourself that you have been in this situation before and you got out of it, and so you will also get out of this situation too.

Furthermore, writing will help you to deal with the pain of the disappointment better.

Read God’s Promises and Bible Stories Often

One thing that helped me to deal with my disappointments was the fact that I chose to read God’s promises in the Bible after I had overcome the initial shock and anger of my disappointments. Promises such as Proverbs 24 : 16 which says, “for a righteous man falls seven times , and rises again,” and Micah 7 : 8 which says, “Rejoice not over me, O my enemy; when I fall , I shall rise; when I sit in darkness, the Lord will be a light to me,” boosted my spirit and gave me the fillip to fight on. Additionally, the stories of Job, who experienced disappointment after disappointment, who lost everything he had, but whom God helped to bounce back, as well as the story of Naomi, who lost her husband and her two sons but whom God gave another opportunity, have really helped me to survive the series of disappointments and they will help you too if you read them.

Surround Yourself With Supportive People

Reach out to people who have your interest at heart and who can give you a healthy outlook on life, and who can encourage you to make good decisions subsequently. Talk to them and it will help you to release the pain and bitterness of the disappointment from your heart, as well as help you to deal with the anxiety associated with the disappointment. Additionally, you may be able to glean suggestions that you can use to help you to cope with the situation.


Praying can help you to feel optimistic about the future, which will help you to adopt a positive attitude so that you can get on with your life quickly.

Therefore, offer up a prayer such as this one when you are disappointed, “Dear Heavenly Father, I thank You for Your mercies and Your grace that have helped me to come this far in life. Lord, I have been disappointed and I am very hurt. Please comfort my heart and give me the grace to stand. Father, please give me strength so that I can get the disappointment behind me quickly. Help me to look forward to the future. And please open up new opportunities for me, new opportunities which are better than the opportunity I lost. Amen.”


This is how to deal with disappointments: Do not allow the loss to dominate you so that you stop living, try to be positive by making positive affirmations to yourself, look at the big picture by considering that the opportunity you lost is not the only opportunity that can make you advance in life, read your Bible often, seek the support of others, and ask for Divine help.

How to Deal With Disappointments

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© 2017 Isaac Nunoofio


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