In this article, you will find the top 5 secrets to reduce disappointment in other people’s behavior. You’ll discover valuable mindset techniques that helped me to improve my relationships radically.

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Estimated reading time: 8 minutes

Do you currently find yourself in a situation where you feel disappointed in somebody else’s behavior? Is it eating you up from the inside? We’ve all been there at a certain point in our lives.

When you do not deal with disappointment, it can truly impact your overall well-being. You may feel sad, depressed and perhaps even angry. Moreover, your relationship with the person you feel disappointed in may change when you carry the disappointment with you too long.

You may not want to let go of the relationship and if that is the case, you should find ways to reduce your disappointment in other people’s behavior. In this article, you will discover 5 secrets that helped me to do this effectively and feel happier in my relationships.

#1 Use The Work To Reduce Disappointment In Other People Instantly

A powerful method when it comes to reducing my disappointment towards other people, is using ‘The Work’ by Byron Katie.

Our minds are amazing; everything you go through, is stored in your brain. Later on, your mind uses earlier experiences to make sense of what is happening to you in the here and now.

However, this automated pattern may disrupt your present situation. For instance, you may have had a horrible experience at a party in the past. Does that mean that all parties suck? No, but your brain tries to convince you that they do!

The same goes for relationships. When you experience a pattern in a current relationship or friendship, that related to a negative experience from the past (with somebody else), your mind will automatically associate it with that past situation.

However, it is wise to question your thoughts and the stories you tell yourself. That is where The Work comes in handy.

How Does It Work?

Before you accept a stressful, anxious or angry thought for the truth, ask yourself these four questions:

  1. Is it true?
  2. Can you absolutely know it’s true?
  3. How do you react, what happens, when you believe that thought?
  4. Who or what would you be without the thought?

This technique is incredibly powerful to reduce disappointment in other people, because it helps you to question your thoughts. You don’t automatically assume that your thoughts or ideas about someone are true, but run them through this short process first.

Oftentimes, you will notice that the current situation actually isn’t that threatening, but that your mind made you believe it is because of bad experiences in the past.

On this page, you can find an extensive worksheet that helps you to practice The Work.

If you’d like to learn more about this method, I highly recommend you to read Byron’s Katie’s book ‘Loving What Is: Four Questions That Can Change Your Life’.

#2 Understand That We Are All On Our Own Journey

Another powerful mindset tip that helped me greatly in reducing disappointment in other people, is to understand one important wisdom: we are all on our own journey in life.

Oftentimes, you may tend to expect others to think and act like you do. Especially when you have a partner or friend, you expect them to share identical thought- and behavior patterns with you. After all, you chose to have them in your life.

On the image, there is a woman sitting and thinking. It looks like she is considering how to reduce disappointment in other people.

However, it is important to be aware of the fact that none of us walk the same path. In life, we come across different situations. We are brought up differently, taught different thought patterns and have experienced different things.

Consequently, we form our own ideas and thoughts of what everything in life should be like. However, there is not one perspective that is right or wrong, as they all differ from one another.

Therefore, in order to reduce disappointment in other people, this is a crucial insight to internalize. When you feel disappointed in your friends or partner’s behavior, understand that they are on their own journey and may see things differently.

Your journeys may currently not align 100%, but that doesn’t mean that the paths of your journey won’t cross again in the future. It is important to be loving towards the position of the other person and allow them to make their own choices, without having to consider your expectations.

All you can do is to accept that the relationship currently has changed. When it is meant to last, it will remain in your life. If it isn’t, let each other go and discover life freely without resentment.

#3 Examine Your Expectations

What also helped me to reduce disappointment in other people, was to examine my own expectations. Oftentimes, when we feel disappointed, we solely feel overwhelmed by the emotions associated with this feeling.

We do not think clearly and feel the emotions in our entire body. When that is the case, it is wise to put your thoughts to paper. Besides using The Work (as described above), you can examine your expectations.

When you expect something from somebody else and they do not meet your expectations, it almost always results in disappointment. Hence, understanding what exactly you expect from the other person helps you to reflect on it more effectively.

Try asking yourself the following questions:

  1. What do I expect from the other person?
  2. Where do my expectations come from?
  3. Are my expectations reasonable?
  4. Which expectations has the person met?
  5. Which expectations has the person not met and why?

By asking yourself these questions, you will be able to pin-point better why you feel disappointed. If you choose to communicate your disappointment with the other person, you will be able to use concrete examples to help them understand why you feel a certain way.

However, these reflection questions also are an effective method to be critical towards your own expectations. For instance, in love we often imagine a relationship that is perfect. As we see picture perfect from other couples on social media and in romantic movies, we expect our own love to be just the same. However, reality is that conflicts every now and then are completely normal.

By being critical towards your own expectations, you can lower them if needed and cut the other person some slack. Nobody is perfect.

#4 Find Happiness Within Yourself To Reduce Disappointment In Other People

Another powerful technique to reduce disappointment in other people, is to learn to find happiness within yourself. Society made us believe that happiness is something that is achieved externally.

Especially millennials and generation Z are struggling with this belief. As we grew up with social media and only saw the perfect external experiences of everyone, we were constantly confronted with the fact that happiness is something you can buy.

However, you have to look inward to feel truly happy. Happiness lies in the here and now and you do not need anybody else but yourself to find it.

What helped me, was to improve my self-esteem. I realized that I let my happiness depend on others for a major part of my life. For instance, I looked for validation from others to feel happier about myself. What I didn’t know back then, was that by doing that, I gave other people an incredibly amount of power over my overall well-being. I let them determine my self-value.

When you feel disappointed about the behavior of other people, it is wise to ask yourself, whether you feel insecure about yourself as a result of their behavior. If that is the case, chances are likely that they are a source of validation for you.

What you can do reduce disappointment in other people, is to improve your self-esteem. By loving yourself deeply and authentically, you take the pressure to be provided with validation away from your relationships.

Most likely, you will notice that your relationships become more authentic, because you do not converse to receive validation, but to be truly interested in your conversation partner.

If you’d like help with learning how to love yourself more deeply, make sure to check out our free personal growth worksheets.

#5 Focus Your Mind And Energy On Other Things

Finally, I highly recommend you to focus your mind and energy on other things for a while. Instead of waiting for the other person to meet your expectations and stop disappointing you, go out there and live your best life.

Meet up with people who do appreciate you for who you are. People who are fun to be around and fit you and your energy. People who are empathic and know how to consider the feelings of others.

Most important of all, spend time with yourself. Don’t depend on other people to go out and do fun activities. It is socially acceptable to go to the cinema by yourself or to go and have dinner by yourself.

By focusing on your own energy and well-being, you will attract the right things into your life. You may even notice that the people who once used to disappoint you, come around and suddenly are there for your again. You ‘setting them free’ from your expectations for a while, may be just what you need to improve your relationship with them.

On a final note, know when it is time to end a relationship. When a person disappointed you over and over again, although you communicated your boundaries and expectations multiple times, you may consider to end the relationship and let each other go.

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