Blessed are they who expect nothing,
for they shall never be disappointed.

Alexander Pope


Disappointment is a good sign of basic intelligence.  It cannot be compared to anything else:  it is so sharp, precise, obvious, and direct.  If we can open, then we suddenly begin to see that our expectations are irrelevant compared with the reality of the situations we are facing.

Chogyam Trungpa

When you find your path, you must not be afraid. You need to have sufficient courage to make mistakes.  Disappointment, defeat, and despair are the tools God uses to show us the way.

Paulo Coelho

You must make a decision that you are going to move on.  It won't happen automatically.  You will have to rise up and say, "I donít care how hard this is, I donít care how disappointed I am, Iím not going to let this get the best of me.  Iím moving on with my life."

Joel Osteen
Your Best Life Now

Disappointments in love, even betrayals and losses, serve the soul at the very moment they seem in life to be tragedies.  The soul is partly in time and partly in eternity.  We might remember the part that resides in eternity when we feel despair over the part that is in life.

Thomas Moore
Care of the Soul


As long as we carry an idealized version of how things and
people, including ourselves, should be, we are likely to
continue experiencing disappointment in our lives.

Lucy Lopez


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It was one of those times you feel a sense of loss, even though
you didn't have something in the first place.  I guess that's what
disappointment is--a sense of loss for something you never had.

Deb Caletti
The Nature of Jade


Disappointment to a noble soul is what cold water is to
burning metal; it strengthens, tempers, intensifies, but
never destroys it.

Eliza Tabor Stephenson


Disappointment is a sort of bankruptcy--the bankruptcy of a
soul that expends too much in hope and expectation.

Eric Hoffer

When we refuse to work with our disappointment, we break the Precepts:
rather than experience the disappointment, we resort to anger, greed, gossip,
criticism.  Yet it's the moment of being that disappointment which is fruitful;
and, if we are not willing to do that, at least we should notice that we are not
willing.  The moment of disappointment in life is an incomparable gift that we
receive many times a day if we're alert.  This gift is always present in
anyone's life, that moment when "It's not the way I want it!"

Charlotte Joko Beck

There can be no deep disappointment where there is not deep love.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

The peculiar predicament of the present-day self surely came to pass as a consequence of the disappointment of the high expectations of the self as it entered the age of science and technology. Dazzled by the overwhelming credentials of science, the beauty and elegance of the scientific method, the triumph of modern medicine over physical ailments, and the technological transformation of the very world itself, the self finds itself in the end disappointed by the failure of science and technique in those very sectors of life which had been its main source of ordinary satisfaction in past ages.

As John Cheever said, the main emotion of the adult Northeastern American who has had all the advantages of wealth, education, and culture is disappointment.

Work is disappointing. In spite of all the talk about making work more creative and self-fulfilling, most people hate their jobs, and with good reason. Most work in modern technological societies is intolerably dull and repetitive.

Marriage and family life are disappointing.  Even among defenders of traditional family values, e.g., Christians and Jews, a certain dreariness must be inferred, if only from the average time of TV viewing.  Dreary as TV is, it is evidently not as dreary as Mom talking to Dad or the kids talking to either.

School is disappointing.  If science is exciting and art is exhilarating, the schools and universities have achieved the not inconsiderable feat of rendering both dull. As every scientist and poet knows, one discovers both vocations in spite of, not because of, school.  It takes years to recover from the stupor of being taught Shakespeare in English Lit and Wheatstone's bridge in Physics.

Politics is disappointing. Most young people turn their backs on politics, not because of the lack of excitement of politics as it is practiced, but because of the shallowness, venality, and image-making as these are perceived through the media--one of the technology's greatest achievements.

The churches are disappointing, even for most believers. If Christ brings us new life, it is all the more remarkable that the church, the bearer of this good news, should be among the most dispirited institutions of the age. The alternatives to the institutional churches are even more grossly disappointing, from TV evangelists with their blown-dry hairdos to California cults led by prosperous gurus ignored in India but embraced in La Jolla.

Social life is disappointing. The very franticness of attempts to reestablish community and festival, by partying, by groups, by club, by touristy Mardi Gras, is the best evidence of the loss of true community and festival and of the loneliness of self, stranded as it is as an unspeakable consciousness in a world from which it perceives itself as somehow estranged, stranded even within its own body, with which it sees no clear connection.

But there remains the one unquestioned benefit of science: the longer and healthier life made possible by modern medicine, the shorter work-hours made possible by technology, hence what is perceived as the one certain reward of dreary life of home and the marketplace: recreation.

Recreation and good physical health appear to be the only ambivalent benefits of the technological revolution.

Walker Percy
Lost in the Cosmos: The Last Self-Help Book

Disappointment is really just a term for our refusal to look on the bright side.

Richelle E. Goodrich
Smile Anyway

One minute of sincere gratitude can wash away a lifetimeís disappointments.

Silvia Hartmann


Anytime you suffer a setback or disappointment,
put your head down and plow ahead.

Les Brown


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Enthusiasm is followed by disappointment and even
depression, and then by renewed enthusiasm.

Murray Gell-Mann

The more we shelter children from every disappointment,
the more devastating future disappointments will be.

Fred G. Gosman


The size of your success is measured by the strength of your desire; the
size of your dream; and how you handle disappointment along the way.

Robert Kiyosaki


Rigid beliefs make disappointments seem unbearable, whereas realistic
beliefs help us to accept disappointment and go on from there.

Eileen Kennedy

Disappointments usually occur when we attempt to do something great.
If you want to avoid being disappointed, donít attempt anything great.



Why do we so frequently, and predictably, experience disappointment?
The answer probably lies in another question that we need to ask
ourselves: Why do we want things to be a certain way and not the
way they are?  Is it because we are convinced that our way is the
only way, or the only way for us?  Is it because we are too fearful
to consider any other way?  Is it because we are reluctant to accept
things as they are? 
As long as we carry an idealized version of how
things and people, including ourselves, should be, we are likely to
continue experiencing disappointment in our lives.  Sometimes, that
disappointment is so automatic a response that it quickly turns into
anger, and before we know it, we have said or done something
to express that disappointment-turned-anger!

Lucy Lopez


People who expect too much are always disappointed.
You would do well to remember that, my boy.

Charmian Hussey
The Valley of Secrets


The child will grow up and find out things for herself.  She will know
that I lied.  She will be disappointed.  That is what is called learning the
truth.  It is a good thing to learn the truth one's self.  To first believe
with all your heart, and then not to believe, is good too.  It fattens the
emotions and makes them to stretch.  When as a woman life and
people disappoint her, she will have had practice in disappointment
and it will not come so hard.  In teaching your child, do not forget
that suffering is good, too.  It makes a person rich in character.

Betty Smith
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn


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Anger, resentment and disappointment, in most cases, can not
exist in our lives without our expressed permission.  An honest
and sincere introspection will reveal that all three emotions are
centered and rooted in self.  They are self preserving reactions
sprung to life by our inconveniently unmet expectations.  Joy
and contentment replaces these emotions when we genuinely
put others before ourselves.

Jason Versey
A Walk with Prudence

The most valuable knowledge we can have is how
to deal with disappointments.

Albert Schweitzer



Daily Meditations, Year One
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