10 Tips for Recovering from Major Disappointments

Sometimes life throws curves at us that take the wind from our sail. If we aren’t careful we can allow the injury to haunt us for life; never regaining what we have lost.

Have you lost a job recently? If you’re not careful, you will falsely assume that you could never get as good of a job again.

Have you had a business failure? If you’re not careful, you’ll keep yourself from ever taking a rid again.

Did you suffer from divorce? If you’re not careful, you’ll believe you can never recover or receive God’s grace.

Did your spouse have an affair? If you’re not careful, you’ll never risk intimate love again.

The Devil loves when you doubt yourself.

What steps should you take to get back on track and succeed again after a major disappointment?

Here are 10 tips to consider during the recovery process:

Reconnect with God. This is always a wise idea, but it becomes a necessity at times like this. Times of disappointment can cause us to emotionally pull away from God. Our faith may still be in tact, but our daily trust waivers. We may know God is able, but we have a harder time trusting Him to do what needs to be done. (I preached about this issue HERE.)

Evaluate your life. Use this time to reevaluate the decisions you have made in life and what got you in the situation you are in today. Are there changes that you need to make? If so, be willing to change. If you did nothing wrong in this case, release yourself from responsibility.

Create some new dreams. Don’t allow past mistakes to keep you from discovering your passions in life. Keep those creative forces going in your mind so you’ll be ready when the next big opportunity comes along. Give yourself permission to believe the impossible. God does.

Call in the advisors. Others can usually see things we cannot see. They approach our life from a different perspective. Give someone you trust, who has your best interest at heart, access to the painful part of your life…and the freedom to speak into your life.

Don’t take your pain and anger out on others. It doesn’t make things better (usually worse) to hurt others because you are hurting. Innocent people shouldn’t be subjected to the wrath of your pain.

Take a break. Don’t expect to recover immediately. Your situation and the emotions and struggles because of them, probably didn’t start overnight and they will not end overnight. Give yourself time to heal.

When it’s time, be willing to risk again. Yes, you may get hurt again, but just as life is full of disappointments, it’s also full of joy and discovery. Remember that everyone is not the same and every situation is different. Don’t hold your past experiences against others who weren’t even there or against a future that hasn’t come.

Don’t let failure or disappointment define you. Be defined by God’s love for you and His plan for your life.

Do something. Rest yes, but at some point, just do something to stay busy and occupy your mind. It’s true that the “idle mind is the devil’s workshop”. If you lost your job, find somewhere to volunteer until you find another job. If you lost a relationship, find non-sexual relationships through church or civic activities to keep from being alone. If nothing else, start journaling as a way to release your thoughts. Do something.

Get back in the game. Choose your next steps carefully and don’t keep repeating the same mistakes, but at some point it will be time to enjoy life again. Life was not meant to be lived on the sidelines.

What steps do you have for receiving from disappointment?

(This is an expanded version from a previous post.)

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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12 thoughts on “10 Tips for Recovering from Major Disappointments

  1. A person necessarily assist to make critically articles I would state. This is the very first time I frequented your website page and up to now? I surprised with the research you made to make this actual publish amazing. Magnificent task!
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  2. This song came to my mind: Reach out to Jesus….
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yox-pSpAzzM

    1. Is your burden heavy
    as you bear it all alone?
    Does the road you travel
    harbor dangers yet unknown?
    Are you growing weary
    in the struggle of it all?
    Jesus will help you,
    when on His name you call

    Chorus:
    He is always there hearing
    every prayer faithful and true
    Walking by our side in His love
    we hide, all the day through
    When you get discouraged
    just remember what to do
    Reach out to Jesus,
    He's reaching out to you

    2. Is the life you're living
    filled with sorrow and despair?
    Does the future push you
    with its weight and its care?
    Are you tired and famished?
    Have you almost lost your way?
    Jesus will help you,
    just come to Him today

  3. Truly excellent and powerful post Ron!
    I know at a recent setback, I was working with a coach to make some changes in my life based on that setback (I evaluated, created some new dreams, sought advisors, etc). A few weeks after implementing these changes, I felt incredible anxiety that I would repeat past behaviors that caused the setback. It was then that my coach reminded me "Matt, you took the steps to make the changes you needed to make…That's not going to happen again." It was a powerful dose of encouragement.

  4. I have the opportunity to go through job loss, got fired once! I needed to do just what you described here, can't say I would change anything! When I called in the advisors, they even had sense enough to let me vent first, I made good choices in my friends!