How to Deal with Disappointment

TL;DR Disappointment will always be part of our life. When we experience it, we can choose to keep holding on to the negative emotion or we can choose to move forward.

We have all been disappointed about something at some point in our lives, whether it was a promotion that didn’t come through, an event that was canceled, or someone you trusted that deceived you.

Disappointment happens when our expectations of an outcome are not met. It is accompanied by mixed negative emotions, from anger and frustration to sadness. It is hard to deal with disappointment, but it is possible to cope with it. It may be difficult, but you can change your negative attitude.

Many people successfully work through disappointment. They were able to take the negative situation and learn from it. We may have different ways of coping with disappointment, but here are some simple tips on how to cope with it and move forward with a positive mindset.

Get A Different Perspective

It is hard to recognize the bigger picture when you feel down and out. When you are disappointed, it is hard to see a positive perspective in life. In these times, it is good to be able to talk to someone to get a fresh perspective on your situation.  

Being able to communicate with someone about how you feel will make you cope with disappointment better. It gives you clarity, and you can see another view aside from your own. Having to see your situation from another perspective will help you think about your action plan for moving forward. Invite someone that you are comfortable talking with for some coffee, you will be surprised how a different perspective will change how you see your situation.

Adjust Expectations

We all have expectations about something or someone, and sometimes these expectations cause our disappointment. The movie wasn’t as satisfying as you had hoped, and the person wasn’t as great as you expected. Having high expectations might disappoint you especially when you are looking for perfection. 

Of course, we are titled to our expectations, but if we expect greatly about things we will be disappointed often. That is why it is always better to adjust our expectations to make them realistic outcomes. For example, when you think that people should answer every time you call on their phone, it would only lead you to disappointment. Managing your expectations will help you cope with disappointment better which can help you comfortably move forward. 

It Fades

Life is a rollercoaster ride, we have our ups, and surely we will have our downs. Sometimes when we are disappointed, we tend to blame ourselves for bad decisions, and having unrealistic expectations, to name a few. Just because we had our setbacks doesn’t mean we are not good enough.

Don’t be hard on yourself, instead give yourself time to process your emotions. No matter how uncomfortable and upsetting you feel, all emotions fade away with time, including disappointment. 

Recognizing what you feel is a step closer to moving forward. Spending your time on something meaningful will help you cope better with disappointment. Distractions will always help you divert your attention until you don’t feel the same intensity of disappointment as before.


One of the best ways to move forward is by accepting the circumstances no matter what, and disappointment is no exception. It will help you cope and move on from it more easily.

Acknowledging and accepting that you are disappointed is one of the best ways to see what went wrong. You can assess yourself and see things you can change moving forward. Avoiding or wallowing in your emotions will not do any better, it will only delay any progress that you will be making. 

Go easy on yourself, disappointment is part of life, it may not be the first time you felt it, but surely it won’t be the last. Accept that you are disappointed and learn from the experience.


When you are stuck on negative thoughts, it is difficult to take small steps toward progress. More often than not, you spend time thinking about what went wrong or what you could have done better. But remember to look at the bigger picture; you may not see it now, but once you refocus your thoughts and mindset, you will feel better than before.

Life will keep moving forward no matter how we feel, and the best way to handle it is by putting all your energy into something positive. Gathering your thoughts and refocusing your mindset will help you cope and move forward with disappointment faster. How we pick ourselves up is a matter of perspective. Take as much time as you need to get into the right frame of mind, but remember that it is how we get back up that counts.  

Dealing with disappointment is not easy, we can take this unfortunate situation and learn to be resilient, or we can wallow in the negative emotions that it brings. As we keep working towards something, disappointment will always be part of it. But let it not stop us from what we want to accomplish in life. Instead, embrace what you feel in your setbacks and let it teach you to be strong and resilient, two key traits to be successful in life.

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