A.A. Milne’s character Winnie the Pooh – Eeyore – the droopy eyed donkey who Winnie loves, has many famous quotes. But this is one of my favorites, especially when thinking about how to work through disappointment. “Weeds are flowers too, once you get to know them.” Disappointment is something we all have to work through. Yet it’s important to know that you can do it – because it’s one of those things that happens to everyone. Something you thought would happen, had counted on and put energy into – won’t happen. And that hurts.
So in today’s episode, sponsored by BetterHelp, I’ll offer seven steps to do just that. What are they?
- Grieve first.
- Start getting perspective right off the bat.
- Consider and acknowledge what your own part and what you were disappointed in is or was. That’s utilizing your internal locus control.
- Acknowledge what you couldn’t control, utilizing your external locus control.
- Build back your energy, enthusiasm by choosing to do things that will bring you pleasure. And those dopamine receptors will love that.
- Look for the windows that are opening as that door closes. Again, you might need friends to do that.
- Reassess your disappointment. Take time in the next two or three months or even six months to look back and say, “All right, how do I perceive that disappointment now?”
We’ll talk about all of these – so that those weeds do become lovely enough and you can move on.
The listener voicemail is from someone who listened to my YouTube talk about enmeshment – not only has she recognized that she and her mom were highly enmeshed, now she’s obsessed with finding out information about it – and doesn’t know what to do. She has a label but now what? I’ll do my best to give her some ideas.
Other Important Links:
BetterHelp, the #1 online therapy provider, has a special offer for you now!
The neurobiology of disappointment – what’s going on in your brain when you’re disappointed?
Another article about the lateral habenula and its role in disappointment and depression
You can hear more about this and many other topics by listening to my podcast, SelfWork with Dr. Margaret Rutherford. Subscribe to my website and receive my weekly newsletter including a blog post and podcast! If you’d like to join my FaceBook closed group, then click here and answer the membership questions! Welcome!
My book entitled Perfectly Hidden Depression has been published and you can order here! Its message is specifically for those with a struggle with strong perfectionism which acts to mask underlying emotional pain. But the many self-help techniques described can be used by everyone who chooses to begin to address emotions long hidden away that are clouding and sabotaging your current life. And it’s available in paperback, eBook or as an audiobook!
And there’s another way to send me a message! You can record by clicking below and ask your question or make a comment. You’ll have 90 seconds to do so and that time goes quickly. By recording, you’re giving SelfWork (and me) permission to use your voice on the podcast. I’ll look forward to hearing from you!