Life expectations are nothing but our own life rules. Each one of us have certain expectations about what our day, month, year or lifetime will bring. Some of these expectations may be full of hope and excitement, others are full of dread and despair, but we set up these rules, and expect the events of our lives and other people to follow them. Sometimes we make these expectations known and at other times we “expect” that it will just occur, but what happens when someone or something doesn’t follow your life rules?
Disappointment. It is part of all our lives at one time or another. It can come in many forms; from a failed relationship, to not getting the job you wanted, your health, your finances or being let down by people close to you. It can be a minor irritation or a life changing event which can invade every aspect of your life.
When was the last time you faced disappointment from a certain outcome that did not meet your expectations? For me, it was very recently. I was let-down by a friend, some-one I considered to be working towards the same thing I was, some-one I trusted, some-one I cared for, and this is why when I realized that this wasn’t the case, I experienced an overwhelming wave of emptiness washing over me.
I questioned whether to write about my deeply personal experience here, and realized that it is easy for me to write about being upbeat and positive in these posts, but now it was time to put my learning and teaching into reality and give you an honest account in how I handled the situation.
My son and I had been working on a major project and had invited a friend to be involved. Without going into the details, I was ultra excited and trusting about this project, but having a business background, I thought it was necessary for us to have a signed contract outlining our expectations.
My alarm bells should have started going off when days, then a couple of weeks passed and the signed contract hadn’t been returned, but she was my friend, surely I could trust her? You see, I had built up in my mind, the way this was going to end up. We were going to have a product to be proud of, our friendship would flourish and our businesses would grow to new heights.
The only problem was that her expectations were not the same as mine, and with 3 days to go before our launch date, and after a phone call, the project was stopped.
That was about 2 months ago, and after an initial few days of me having a “pity party” for myself, I moved on. Production on our brand new product was scheduled and we are nearing completion on that project. Life was on the up and up and my disappointment with the initial project was over.
There have been a couple of setbacks along the way, most recently yesterday when I received a letter from this person. That’s the reason for this post today. Initially, I felt that gut-wrenching pain come flooding back, but it was gone very quickly.
I thought seriously about how I had come from being in tears to that feeling of acceptance and peace. Instead of giving up my goal, and wallowing in my disappointment, there were a couple of things I did, which apart from sounding good on paper actually worked for me. I can write this article without feeling sadness or bitterness, just acceptance. Wow! As I wrote that last sentence, I realized just how far I have come. What a wonderful feeling.
Here is a list of some of the things I have undertaken in the past few months.
- Initially I had feelings of despair about the lost friendship and money. I realized that these feelings were keeping me in a very low vibration and I needed to bring my consciousness to a higher level. I recharged myself by doing the things I loved – gardening, walking, watching funny movies, and probably most importantly for me, I meditated a lot than usual. This allowed me to clear the negative thoughts from my mind, and gain clarity about what to do.
- I let go of what “should have happened.” I realized that my dreams and actions were the only thing I had control over, and to judge someone else for pursuing their dreams was having a negative affect on my life.
- I placed a quote near my computer from Martin Luther King which I saw every day when I was working. Whenever I thought negatively about the situation, this was staring me in the face – a great reminder. “We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope”
Please share with us ways you have overcome disappointment in your life. From sharing we can all learn, and as I have been reminded recently, it doesn’t matter how much you “know”, it’s how you react in real life situations that makes the difference in your life.