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How to Release Disappointment for Good – 3 Strategies

Updated: May 25, 2022

When there is a discrepancy between wanting (expecting) and reality (outcome), it leads to an unmet expectation. The aftermath of which can trigger negative emotions. It may appear that wanting is the source of suffering. Can you release disappointment for good by never wanting in the first place?

That is certainly not the answer. It is important to want things. Wild Moon Healing is about creating your best life, and you must know what you want in order to accomplish that.


Self-exploration is how you get to know yourself and discover what it is you truly want. Once you know what you want—dream big! To have an expectation is to believe strongly that something will happen. This has nothing to do with an attitude of entitlement. In fact, it sounds a little bit like faith to me. Hopes and dreams give you direction and fuel your ambition.

hope and dreams

With hopes and dreams, your focus is on expecting something positive. The absence of purpose and direction, which fuels your dreams, does not mean the absence of expectations. It is impossible to remove expectation from your life as it is also impossible to never experience disappointment. But you can release feelings of fear and defeat by the way you think about your experience.


Release Disappointment – Your Thoughts and Reality


Your thoughts create your reality. Often times feeling crushed is from the expectations others had for you (or so you think) or from overwhelming pressure to deliver. However, we are always hardest on ourselves.


When you beat yourself up, your dissatisfaction with an outcome becomes an anchor weighing you down instead of the engine that drives you. When this happens you may give up on your dreams when you do not know how to release disappointment.


If you feel like whatever you do is never good enough or experience any negative self-talk such as:

  1. I Should be in better shape

  2. I should have tried harder

  3. I should be farther along in life

  4. I should have gotten the promotion

  5. I have to be better next time

…then you are beating yourself up with the should have/could have game.

When you are in this place of unhappiness (in the suck, as I like to call it), you want to shift your energy to release disappointment. An energetic shift can start when you change your thoughts, which, in turn, shifts your reality.


Three strategies we’ll explore in releasing unmet expectations and shifting your energy are:

  1. Progress over perfection

  2. Being present

  3. Surrender the outcome.

Progress over Perfection

The pursuit of perfection will always create struggle. Perfection is a good example of an energetic leak. Its subjective nature is the very source from which you create expectations and make choices based on “have to,” “should,” or “can’t;” therefore, you relinquish your personal power. You are trying to control something that doesn’t even exist.

release disappointment

The idea of perfect suggests that you judge your value based on the opinions and approval of others. You cannot focus on your hopes and dreams when you are worried about what everyone else thinks. As with the analogy above, perfectionism is an anchor. You cannot experience personal growth or movement toward your dreams when an ideal (whatever you believe perfect to be) weighs you down.


Focusing on what you think your perfect ending (the outcome) is supposed to be, is the foundation of your dissatisfaction. There is a lesson in the concept of perfection: The struggle that perfection creates by comparing yourself is living in constant disappointment (striving for perfect -> struggle -> disappointment).


Going after what you want and your dreams are an imperfect process. Have fun with life, keep making progress, and expect learning opportunities.


Be Present

To release negative emotion, you must be present. If you are unable to remain in the present moment, you are experiencing an energetic leak. You can have expectations in different “times” (past or future), which create negative emotions in the present moment. Examples are:



releasing disappointment
  • Imagining potential future scenarios where you might be happier (fantasy)

  • Imagining potential future scenarios where you might suffer (anxiety)

  • Remembering only good times (reverie)

  • Focusing on past mistakes or on what could have/should have been (regret/guilt)

The only healthy place to live is in the present moment. Dreaming about tomorrow is necessary to fuel your passion. You can distinguish between unhappiness resulting from fantasy, anxiety, or guilt (which occurs in a different “time” that only exists in your mind) and that of frustration while going after your dreams. The difference is that you take inspired action to create your future.


When you are in the driver’s seat, creating your life, accountable for your actions—disappointment turns into lessons learned. You can only learn the lesson from you own your actions. You can only be accountable and take responsibility for what you do. You cannot do anything yesterday or tomorrow—inspired action can only occur right now in the present moment.


Surrender the Outcome


When you know what you want—your dream big—and you go after that dream with huge expectations, you can avoid disappointment from the beginning by surrendering the outcome. Remember, with hopes and dreams, your focus is on expecting something positive. This is faith—tapping into your belief system. Beliefs allude to the sense of knowing, having faith that things will happen in their perfect time.


So, have faith, trust, and surrender the outcome to the universe or wherever you gain your strength. You don’t need to know the outcome. Why? Because your way is not the only way. What you think your perfect ending is supposed to be, excludes all other possibilities.


When you are not looking for or anticipating unexpected blessings, you suppress opportunities and resources that may have otherwise led you on a very fulfilling journey that you could have never dreamed possible.


So that unmet expectation could just be a message from above telling you to keep the course because you aren’t going to believe what’s coming… but you still have to take inspired action toward your dreams.


Release DisappointmentConclusion

So, check in with yourself. Feel your feelings. It is okay to feel disappointed. But, examine your thoughts. Are you making choices based on “have to,” “should,” or “can’t?” Are your thoughts creating your constant struggle?

unlearn, release disappointment

Are you striving for perfection? Are you thinking about the past or future instead of taking inspired action now? Are you trying to control the outcome or have a narrow vision of what your future holds (instead of being open to all possibilities)?

I’d love to hear from you. How are your thoughts creating your reality? Do you need to release disappointment?


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