This past Saturday I had yet another disappointment. I get them quite frequently because one of my dreams has been eluding me for quite some time now. What I’ve realized is this. I’ve got to stop comparing myself to others my age or younger and everything, I mean everything happens in God’s time and to BE GRATEFUL for what I have.
What I’ve also learned is just how negative my head can be. I call myself to task because I don’t feel I’m where I want to be in life. I beat myself up and think that I’m less than everyone. I also have the old idea that if I beat myself up and suffer that somehow that will get me what I want. That only gets me more pain and suffering.
We were all dealt cards in life and they’re the same three cards…BE HAPPY, JOYOUS AND FREE. That is what God wants from us no matter what our lives have entailed. So, because I’m in recovery – I’m going to give you 12 steps to get over disappointment.
Step One – Admit you’re powerless over your emotions. Yes, that’s right. When the crushing defeat of disappointment hits you…Feel your damn feelings. It’s okay. I was always in the camp of – my feelings will kill me. They won’t. Trust me I have meltdowns…which is okay, unless you have those meltdowns on your husband which results in ugly fights (this I know from experience).
Step Two – Some medical professionals say that dealing with the fact that a major life goal has closed the door on you in not dissimilar to processing grief. So with this pain – get it out. After you’ve had your tantrum (alone!) – get to writing in a journal. Write a letter to God. Tell him how upset you are. He can take it. Talk to empathetic friends or anyone in your support system.
Step Three – After your grieving period when you talk about it, had meltdowns and got it out. It’s time to let it go. Now, it usually takes me a week to get over a disappointment and that is okay. I allow myself the time to be angry and grieve…but then it gets too much and I have to let it go. Let go and let God as we say. I have to realize that I’m not in charge of my life, my higher power is.
Step Four – Self Care & helping others – Problems die of neglect when you’re helping someone else. I used to go into the prisons and help Jewish drug addicts and alcoholics. I didn’t think once about my problems when I listened to them. Also practicing self care is important. I have to get out of bed with the covers over my head and get some exercise, sun and do something fun for myself.
Step Five – Prayer and meditation – Get your conscious contact on with your higher power. When disappointment strikes, you fall off the spiritual beam. Get back on by clearing your mind of negative thoughts and realize that you’re here for a purpose. But most importantly talk to your higher power. Surrender to his will for you.
Step Six – Hit the pause button – Your higher power can’t help you when you’re in chaos and disturbed. You gotta be calm and level headed which means take a break for a little to regroup.
Step Seven – Acceptance – Acceptance is the answer to all of your problems. The disappointment has happened, accept it. Stay in the present and don’t live in past disappointments or the current one. All we have is the present and that is where your higher power is.
Step Eight – Forgive – Forgive yourself for not handling the disappointment well, for getting emotional, for comparing yourself to others, for beating yourself up…And forgive those involved in the disappointment.
Step Nine – Unwavering Faith – In other words, don’t give up. Have faith that it is happening maybe not in the way you think it should. It never looks the way you think it’s going to but most of the time it will work out better than what you had imagined.
Step Ten – Law of Attraction – I hate to say this but do The Secret. It helps me keep in the right mindset and also the law of attraction does work. Mostly I do it because it’s so damn positive and reminds me to always have positive thoughts and to stay out of the negative.
Step Eleven – Law of Detachment – the law of detachment is just as important as the law of attraction. You have to be okay not getting what you want in order to get what you want. In other words you’re okay either way. It doesn’t mean giving up your dreams – just detaching from the outcome.
Step Twelve – Gratitude – The antidote to self pity, not getting what you want, disappointment or feeling less than is gratitude. I seriously do 3 gratitude lists a day. Focus on what you do have. I over look the most important accomplishment in my life when I’m feeling bad about myself…I am 10 years clean and sober.