Who hasn’t experienced that knot in their stomach when they feel like someone we trust has disappointed us? Why do so many people end up shutting down and not believing in people? Is it true that no one can be trusted?
For disappointment to occur, we must have previously built an expectation. “I didn’t expect that from you”, “I thought you would do this for me”, etc.
We value people’s behavior as long as it matches our beliefs about how someone should behave in this role: our mother should be loving and understanding, our father protective and strong, our partner can only have eyes for us and our friends should always be -hi. ”If this behavior goes beyond what we deem appropriate, we get angry, disappointed, sad and even feel like we don’t know the person in front of us.
Because? Because we don’t relate to people as they are, but as we believe them, Or worse, as we want. We idealize, project, devalue and therefore do not relate in a real way, but fantasized. However, there are some helpful strategies for overcoming disappointments in the best possible way.
The first step in protecting yourself from the uncomfortable feeling of being disappointed is not to place too much expectation on the people we interact with. Not expecting too much from people has nothing to do with the pessimistic idea that “everyone is going to fail us”, but with trying to see the person as they are and not as we want them to be. it is, and to accept that certain decisions or certain behaviors they make as a free person that he is, we may not like him.
Secondly we must avoid projections and excessive generalizations in relation to our past experiences. The disappointments and breaches of trust that we suffered long ago have nothing to do with our current reality, and putting up a wall as a defensive mechanism in the face of future disappointments will only serve to distance us from society and therefore to feel alone and alive. by fear.
Yet it is likely that throughout our lives we will suffer from betrayal, lies, or harm from a loved one or someone we consider trustworthy. What if we are in this situation?
1. Regulate the emotions that arise as a result of disappointment
Emotions related to sadness, fear, anger or frustration appear in the face of disappointment. It is important to learn to identify them, experience them and regulate them in a healthy way so that they do not become chronic or backfire on us. We must also give ourselves our space to cry and release the anger that occurred in the face of the unexpected situation.
2. Talk about our feelings
We also need to verbalize our feelings in front of someone we trust., And if necessary, with the person who committed the “offense” so that he understands our emotions.
We must assess and weigh whether we want this person to continue to be a part of our life, or if on the contrary we prefer to make our own way without him. Either way, it’s important to work on forgiveness so that the emotion doesn’t lead to resentment that only poisons us.
3. Start seeing disappointment as a learning experience
Once the whirlwind of emotions we have felt through disappointment has passed, it is important that we do some self-examination or soul-searching to monitor if the image we built of that person was distorted, What if we tend to idealize our interpersonal relationships.
Disappointment also reminds us that relationships are constantly changing and that we have to come to terms with their uncontrollability, as well as the behavior of those around us.
4. Rely on people again
There are disappointments that hurt us so much that we feel like we can never trust anyone again, and as protection we run the risk of becoming inaccessible, suspicious, paranoid or unfair to those around us.
No one can assure us that our loved ones won’t “fail” us, but accepting the possibility and enjoying the relationship in the present is the smarter option.
“We need people in our lives who we can be as sincere as possible. Having real conversations with people seems like such a simple and obvious proposition, but it does involve courage and risk,” said Thomas Moore.