Living Outside The Box Born-Again Techo-Geek Renaissance Man

16Mar/160

Get Used To Disappointment

Posted by Jeff Hendricks

Yesterday, I was disappointed, and in turn, I disappointed someone else.

It wasn't intentional. I didn't start off my day by saying "I feel like letting someone down today."

And the sad part is, it wasn't even my fault. My old car- admittedly, it's old and unreliable- broke down. Big shocker? Not really. Did it disappoint me? Yeah. I was hoping it wouldn't break.

But, the bigger truth here is that we're always placing expectations on things, and we get mad when they don't happen. I expect my car to not break down. I expect my children to learn responsibility when I don't drill it into them at a young age. I expect my wife to be able to read my mind (admittedly, not that hard... I only think about a few things). I expect that my boss will always give me the easiest jobs.

And when none of those things happen, I'm disappointed.

And every time I screw up, I know I'm disappointing someone else. Every time, I think "that's the last straw, they're going to leave/fire/kick me now." But you know what? Life is a balance of success and failures. Anybody who hasn't tasted failure and disappointment hasn't really lived. And I've done a lot of living, so I've failed a lot.

Why are we so afraid of failure? Sometimes it's just out of our control. Maybe we should have known better, maybe we couldn't have. Maybe we just feel bad because things didn't turn out the way our optimistic selves thought they would.

So, the reality is, the more stuff I do, the more chances I have of failing. I guess I'm okay with that. I don't like living in the safe zone all the time. If I wanted to play it safe, I wouldn't have started biking to work, or bought a 50-year-old car to drive around. I wouldn't have written a book, or started a band, or started a podcast, or any number of other things I've done.

I understand playing it safe keeps you from disappointing people. But sometimes, you just have to give it a shot anyway.