What To Do When You Disappoint The People You Care About.

It’s evitable. You are going to disappoint people that you really care about.
Friends, partners, clients. It’s going to happen.

And it’s usually not a huge mistake.

It’s a series of small annoying behaviors that, if not addressed properly, can lead to the people you care about being more than just disappointed.

Soon they’re angry and unforgiving.

And that means rebuilding the relationship is close to impossible. Even if you patch things up they don’t really ever forget your poor behavior.

So it’s important that you understand how to behave when you disappoint the people you care about.

You can’t just run and hide. That doesn’t work.

Neither does hoping that they’ll forget about it. That is shamefully short of the mark.

You need to be radical in how you react — knowing that your simmering relationships are on the verge of a volcanic eruption. This is not the time for small measures.

So what should you do?

Here are a few steps to get you headed in the right direction.

  1. Be aware why people around you are disappointed in you. Take note of both who and why.
  2. Take a moment to breathe. Reflect. Don’t let your emotions dictate your immediate actions.  Those reactions will just hurt you.
  3. Accept responsibility. Not for the disappointment alone — for your behavior along the way. Look at what you have done and admit your shortcomings (to yourself first).
  4. Make an unconditional, absolute apology. Don’t wiggle or waggle or be cute.  Just say “I am sorry.”
  5. Improve your performance. Look at where things went wrong and then be proactive about making sure those things don’t happen again. Actively create habits that drive mastery.
  6. Share your goals for improvement with the people that you have disappointed.  Let them know where and how and why you are working to be a better person. And keep yourself honest. Every once in a while stop and think about your improvement. Are you getting better? Or are you just better at pretending like nothing is wrong?
  7. Get help with skills that are hard to master. You might need a coach to help you fix you.  So get one.  Every super star has an amazing group of people helping them to take their game to the next level.
  8. Repeat as often as necessary.  At first, the cycle of improvement is stiff and awkward, but the more you work on improving, the more natural it becomes. And the better you’ll become.

Think about how you feel when people you care about disappoint you.  How do you feel?

It matters what you do.

You know that already.  Because you know how you feel when you are disappointed and the person that did it doesn’t seem to care at all.

It’s a wound that stays open even if you confront them about it.  It’s a broken relationship that might never heal.

Don’t be too proud or fearful to heal the hurts you cause.

People who care about you are too valuable a resource to just throw away.

Start healing.  Start with you.

0 Replies to “What To Do When You Disappoint The People You Care About.”

  1. Hey, Dan, thanks for posting. We often only think about people disappointing us so it’s good to see an article that does an about face on that. We sometimes do indeed end up disappointing others. How to go about that will depend on the situation. Sometimes it might require an apology and an action. So if you haven’t helped out your friend like you promised then do the thing you promised. If you know it’s bugging your friend that you didn’t replace the book you lost then buy another copy. Sometimes all that is required is to firmly make your way back into a friendship and let the good times commence again.
    “Get help with skills that are hard to master. You might need a coach to
    help you fix you. So get one. Every super star has an amazing group of
    people helping them to take their game to the next level.” Yeah, we are often too self-reliant. There are a lot of friendship experts and people passionate about other topics like communicating with others, social skills and how to resolve conflicts. People we could learn a great deal from if we took the time to read their material or even ‘follow’ them on-line by subscribing to their newsletter or joining their facebook community page. .

  2. Hey, Dan, thanks for posting. We often only think about people disappointing us so it’s good to see an article that does an about face on that. We sometimes do indeed end up disappointing others. How to go about that will depend on the situation. Sometimes it might require an apology and an action. So if you haven’t helped out your friend like you promised then do the thing you promised. If you know it’s bugging your friend that you didn’t replace the book you lost then buy another copy. Sometimes all that is required is to firmly make your way back into a friendship and let the good times commence again.
    “Get help with skills that are hard to master. You might need a coach to
    help you fix you. So get one. Every super star has an amazing group of
    people helping them to take their game to the next level.” Yeah, we are often too self-reliant. There are a lot of friendship experts and people passionate about other topics like communicating with others, social skills and how to resolve conflicts. People we could learn a great deal from if we took the time to read their material or even ‘follow’ them on-line by subscribing to their newsletter or joining their facebook community page. .

  3. Hey, Dan, thanks for posting. We often only think about people disappointing us so it’s good to see an article that does an about face on that. We sometimes do indeed end up disappointing others. How to go about that will depend on the situation. Sometimes it might require an apology and an action. So if you haven’t helped out your friend like you promised then do the thing you promised. If you know it’s bugging your friend that you didn’t replace the book you lost then buy another copy. Sometimes all that is required is to firmly make your way back into a friendship and let the good times commence again.
    “Get help with skills that are hard to master. You might need a coach to
    help you fix you. So get one. Every super star has an amazing group of
    people helping them to take their game to the next level.” Yeah, we are often too self-reliant. There are a lot of friendship experts and people passionate about other topics like communicating with others, social skills and how to resolve conflicts. People we could learn a great deal from if we took the time to read their material or even ‘follow’ them on-line by subscribing to their newsletter or joining their facebook community page. .

  4. What can you do if you have crossed the line and disappointed someone to the extent that you caused them to cry when they never cry. Ever. I apologized and then I became very emotional too and she just said stop and kept on choking the tears in a few slip out every now and then. I don’t know what to do I Txted her I am sorry as well I have said about a thousand times but now she’s just ignoring me

    1. Time heals all wounds. People need space to think things through.

      Don’t mess that up by trying to force yourself into the situation.

      Apologize sincerely and directly. And then ask what you can do to make things better.

      Dan

  5. What can you do if you have crossed the line and disappointed someone to the extent that you caused them to cry when they never cry. Ever. I apologized and then I became very emotional too and she just said stop and kept on choking the tears in a few slip out every now and then. I don’t know what to do I Txted her I am sorry as well I have said about a thousand times but now she’s just ignoring me

    1. Time heals all wounds. People need space to think things through.

      Don’t mess that up by trying to force yourself into the situation.

      Apologize sincerely and directly. And then ask what you can do to make things better.

      Dan

  6. What can you do if you have crossed the line and disappointed someone to the extent that you caused them to cry when they never cry. Ever. I apologized and then I became very emotional too and she just said stop and kept on choking the tears in a few slip out every now and then. I don’t know what to do I Txted her I am sorry as well I have said about a thousand times but now she’s just ignoring me

    1. Time heals all wounds. People need space to think things through.

      Don’t mess that up by trying to force yourself into the situation.

      Apologize sincerely and directly. And then ask what you can do to make things better.

      Dan

  7. I recently disappointed a good friend of mine cause i kept sending messages to his phone it happen one week age and usually he a understanding person & is there a way to get him back i know a way is give him time planning to give him another week of space that all i hope he accept him back i am sure he will once he seen some actions from me changes he wanted me to change but didnt show him never too late to change & prove to him cause of his nice character

      1. Now i can only give him space first take time to solve our friendship the problem was one week ago how long should i give him space he must i am so bad i disappoint a number of times

          1. Lucky the same mistake i did it with a previous friend too who was like a best friend to me i always make the same mistake whenever i found a very nice guy who can be a good friend i tend to go out of control, right now he isnt talking to me cause he was disappointed with me it happen 1 week ago the friendship can still be salvage i hope

          2. Still time to gain him back that all i can prove to him by action only way i learn from it

  8. I recently disappointed a good friend of mine cause i kept sending messages to his phone it happen one week age and usually he a understanding person & is there a way to get him back i know a way is give him time planning to give him another week of space that all i hope he accept him back i am sure he will once he seen some actions from me changes he wanted me to change but didnt show him never too late to change & prove to him cause of his nice character

      1. Now i can only give him space first take time to solve our friendship the problem was one week ago how long should i give him space he must i am so bad i disappoint a number of times

          1. Lucky the same mistake i did it with a previous friend too who was like a best friend to me i always make the same mistake whenever i found a very nice guy who can be a good friend i tend to go out of control, right now he isnt talking to me cause he was disappointed with me it happen 1 week ago the friendship can still be salvage i hope

          2. Still time to gain him back that all i can prove to him by action only way i learn from it

  9. I recently disappointed a good friend of mine cause i kept sending messages to his phone it happen one week age and usually he a understanding person & is there a way to get him back i know a way is give him time planning to give him another week of space that all i hope he accept him back i am sure he will once he seen some actions from me changes he wanted me to change but didnt show him never too late to change & prove to him cause of his nice character

      1. Now i can only give him space first take time to solve our friendship the problem was one week ago how long should i give him space he must i am so bad i disappoint a number of times

          1. Lucky the same mistake i did it with a previous friend too who was like a best friend to me i always make the same mistake whenever i found a very nice guy who can be a good friend i tend to go out of control, right now he isnt talking to me cause he was disappointed with me it happen 1 week ago the friendship can still be salvage i hope

          2. Still time to gain him back that all i can prove to him by action only way i learn from it

  10. What is “evitable?” Neither myself nor the internet or any dictionaries consulted have any idea what that is supposed to mean.

  11. What is “evitable?” Neither myself nor the internet or any dictionaries consulted have any idea what that is supposed to mean.

  12. What is “evitable?” Neither myself nor the internet or any dictionaries consulted have any idea what that is supposed to mean.

  13. I have made people angry and in turn received harsh silent treatment and/or getting punished for not doing such things. I do have a past whereby i slack down and memories come into play hindering my performance. Things happened back home and it is revolving in my head every now and then making me depressed. In the concoction of the mix, i was terminated from my job which enhanced my depression thereby i was in bed full time. I do have a problem in verbally exorcising my demons and issues to my family members, however, talking to friends somewhat helps me in getting problems solved. Psychiatrist will be my last resort, nonetheless, talking with people have to have a beginning. Trying to change is a difficult step to take and I am on that journey of enlightment. I am living with my cousin sister who dearly loves me as much as she loves her own family, and seeing her being angry and giving me a silent treatment is heart breaking. Why am I writing this here? I need help. I am new to U.S. and as said before my family is having a lot of issue so as a matter of fact I didn’t escape them, however, they are also disappointed in me in not having a bright road. I dont want to be a sore loser of having a drunk life and partying and I am not a party type as a 26 year old man. I want people to be happy and I feel like when I am depressed, it also affects others well being and I don’t know how to tap into thoughts. I feel exhausted and angry at myself and everything. Any solutions?

    1. Asoka,
      Take back your life one day at a time. One hour at a time. Spend time doing things that inspire you. Make time each morning to meditate. Try the 6 Phase meditation (just 15 minutes) that Vishen Lakiani put together. Look here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaRu14P9H84

      Nothing happens overnight. Change is hard. Even good progress will come with mistakes. People will misjudge you. Stay focused on getting to where you want to be. Ignore the fear and doubts in your mind. Believe in yourself. Take a gamble on your success.

      Start by sitting down and writing out a list of people to whom you need to apologize. Then write them all notes asking for forgiveness. Share what you intend to do to change. Be raw and vulnerable. Don’t make excuses or blame other people.

      Rise above this. You have so much life ahead of you. Don’t let this hold you down.

      Dan

  14. I have made people angry and in turn received harsh silent treatment and/or getting punished for not doing such things. I do have a past whereby i slack down and memories come into play hindering my performance. Things happened back home and it is revolving in my head every now and then making me depressed. In the concoction of the mix, i was terminated from my job which enhanced my depression thereby i was in bed full time. I do have a problem in verbally exorcising my demons and issues to my family members, however, talking to friends somewhat helps me in getting problems solved. Psychiatrist will be my last resort, nonetheless, talking with people have to have a beginning. Trying to change is a difficult step to take and I am on that journey of enlightment. I am living with my cousin sister who dearly loves me as much as she loves her own family, and seeing her being angry and giving me a silent treatment is heart breaking. Why am I writing this here? I need help. I am new to U.S. and as said before my family is having a lot of issue so as a matter of fact I didn’t escape them, however, they are also disappointed in me in not having a bright road. I dont want to be a sore loser of having a drunk life and partying and I am not a party type as a 26 year old man. I want people to be happy and I feel like when I am depressed, it also affects others well being and I don’t know how to tap into thoughts. I feel exhausted and angry at myself and everything. Any solutions?

    1. Asoka,
      Take back your life one day at a time. One hour at a time. Spend time doing things that inspire you. Make time each morning to meditate. Try the 6 Phase meditation (just 15 minutes) that Vishen Lakiani put together. Look here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaRu14P9H84

      Nothing happens overnight. Change is hard. Even good progress will come with mistakes. People will misjudge you. Stay focused on getting to where you want to be. Ignore the fear and doubts in your mind. Believe in yourself. Take a gamble on your success.

      Start by sitting down and writing out a list of people to whom you need to apologize. Then write them all notes asking for forgiveness. Share what you intend to do to change. Be raw and vulnerable. Don’t make excuses or blame other people.

      Rise above this. You have so much life ahead of you. Don’t let this hold you down.

      Dan

  15. I have made people angry and in turn received harsh silent treatment and/or getting punished for not doing such things. I do have a past whereby i slack down and memories come into play hindering my performance. Things happened back home and it is revolving in my head every now and then making me depressed. In the concoction of the mix, i was terminated from my job which enhanced my depression thereby i was in bed full time. I do have a problem in verbally exorcising my demons and issues to my family members, however, talking to friends somewhat helps me in getting problems solved. Psychiatrist will be my last resort, nonetheless, talking with people have to have a beginning. Trying to change is a difficult step to take and I am on that journey of enlightment. I am living with my cousin sister who dearly loves me as much as she loves her own family, and seeing her being angry and giving me a silent treatment is heart breaking. Why am I writing this here? I need help. I am new to U.S. and as said before my family is having a lot of issue so as a matter of fact I didn’t escape them, however, they are also disappointed in me in not having a bright road. I dont want to be a sore loser of having a drunk life and partying and I am not a party type as a 26 year old man. I want people to be happy and I feel like when I am depressed, it also affects others well being and I don’t know how to tap into thoughts. I feel exhausted and angry at myself and everything. Any solutions?

    1. Asoka,
      Take back your life one day at a time. One hour at a time. Spend time doing things that inspire you. Make time each morning to meditate. Try the 6 Phase meditation (just 15 minutes) that Vishen Lakiani put together. Look here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaRu14P9H84

      Nothing happens overnight. Change is hard. Even good progress will come with mistakes. People will misjudge you. Stay focused on getting to where you want to be. Ignore the fear and doubts in your mind. Believe in yourself. Take a gamble on your success.

      Start by sitting down and writing out a list of people to whom you need to apologize. Then write them all notes asking for forgiveness. Share what you intend to do to change. Be raw and vulnerable. Don’t make excuses or blame other people.

      Rise above this. You have so much life ahead of you. Don’t let this hold you down.

      Dan

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