What do you do when things happen in your life that you’re not happy about?
Well although this is part of life, you know, things happening that you don’t like. We never seem to be able to get used to it.
This week I found myself in a situation like this. Basically, something was agreed, we started on the path towards making it happen and someone got cold feet. Funnily enough, this same thing happened this individual a few months ago and I was the person who helped them out. Actually, I am still absolutely happy that I did and have not had a second thought about that at all.
However, to be let down is hardly ever leaves you with a good feeling or experience. So what do you do about it? It’s very easy to want to retaliate. You want to remind the individual of how many times you’ve been there for them. You may want to share your disappointment and all of the other emotions that you may be experiencing at the time.
And when you hear the news it can be quite hard to even want to listen to anything else the individual has to say, because you are in the place of shock and still trying to process your own emotional state. It’s a hard place to be in, but know that it’s just temporary.
I having experienced this just recently I thought I’d share how I got through it, in the hope that my experience may help you if you find yourself in a similar space.
Thoughts that helped me through this type of thing:
Think about the longer term and not just this moment
The hardest thing to do at that point in time is to think about the longer term and what you really want to achieve out of the relationship, depending that what type of relationship it is that you have with the individual in question, in the longer term.
Even if you don’t have a long-term relationship or you don’t wish to have one going forward, it is still important that you manage your emotional state. I’m not saying it’s easy, but to say or do something that you might later regret or that might cause you problems in the future is not worth the brief moment of anger or frustration you might be feeling right now.
Lashing out in anger or frustration, even if you feel you are justified will have a negative impact on your own longer term self-esteem, on a personal level, and your professionalism in your career or business front. And besides you may well find some information out later that puts a completely different spin on things. You really don’t know at this point.
It’s better to:
- Hold your tongue and
- Try to remove yourself from the situation as quickly as possible, so that you can allow yourself time to reflect on what you’ve just been told and how you can move forward.
2. Belief in the best outcome
I sincerely believe that everything happens for a reason, and everything works out for the better in the longer term, even though you might not be able to see it at this moment in time.
This is the belief I hold on to and this belief helps me manage my emotions: the disappointment, sometimes the hurt and frustration that a change in someone else’s plans has brought my way.
We are all free to make different choices all the time, and at any time. If someone else were to try to stop you making a change in a previous decision, let’s be real, you would not like that at all. My freedom is something that is of paramount importance to me and the freedom to make my own decisions and to change my mind is a big part of that. So with that in mind, I guess I need to extend the same opportunity for free-will to others as I’d expect to be given.
Another thing I have to accept that we both have the right to use the option of free-will whenever we feel the need. It just so happens that the other person, in this situation has chosen to use it this time. Be flexible with them and with yourself, if it might be a little disruption in the interim.
A different path does not mean they hate you
People still wish you well even when they cannot or are not able to walk the same path as you on a particular thing. Mature relationships are those where people are able to see things different and accept the differences, yet continue to build a strong relationship.
Yes, I will admit there are questions of trust, reliability and strength of character that may well be raised by this new situation, but if this is the first time this has happened in this relationship, then I’d say, it is likely to be too soon to consider the individual untrustworthy. You may find things out at a later date that might change that, but you are not there yet, just deal with what you have before you now.
It’s easy to interpret a no as a rejection of you, but 99% of the time, particularly when dealing with friends, who have been there with you in the past, a different decision does not mean that they have changed how they feel or think about you.
There could be a million reasons why someone has changed their mind, and as stated previously, we change our minds frequently as well, so it’s important that we get a grip and not take it personally.
Let it go
Find a way to let it go as quickly as possible. Now I know that this may not always be easy and that it may take some time, but if you keep reminding yourself of the decisions you’ve made on the previous points, these can help you to begin to let it go. It’s just one thing, it’s not the end of the world, no matter how you feel about it just now.
Life is miraculous, surprising and an amazing journey. We can never work out how it will go for us. This change in plans and paths may very well turn out to be a life-changing blessing. If you hold on to that thought: the possibility of miracles around the corner, you may very well find one even in this.
When I reflect on my life I can truly say that some of the most disappointing times (or so I thought) turned out to be situations that opened the door for the greater achievement of my personal dreams, ambitions and success. And in fact, should those people who I thought were letting me down or disappointing me then appear now, I would probably say a big thank you to them.
Even they may not have realised that what they were doing at the time was stepping aside and allowing me to become who I am today, as I look back I realise that is exactly what they were doing. Allowing me to make decisions and do things for myself that, had they been there, I probably might never have done, learnt or achieved.
So look ahead because this is an opportunity for you do achieve a different, better and even more amazing outcome. You just can’t see it yet, but I guarantee, it’s there waiting for you to get your mindset right and your walking shoes on. Good luck.