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Tame the Primitive Brain: 28 Ways in 28 Days to Manage the Most Impulsive Behaviors at Work by Mark Bowden

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Day 26

Manage Your Disappointment

Dealing with the Letdown

I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t angry some days.

—Monica Lewinsky

Today you’ll tame:

  • Your original motivations versus the newer outcomes
Three years into the job and Kristin was still not getting what she had expected out of it.
Every six months or so she would ask management if she could move the work she was doing closer to what she had believed it would be when she had taken the post. And every six months management would assure her that she would be allowed to work on the projects of interest for her, eventually. Yet year after year, it never happened.
Kristin had lived with hope for four years, but this fifth one had hit her badly.
She was now taking weeks off from work, feeling low and lethargic; and when she was at work, she was irritable. At times, she had even been irrationally aggressive with coworkers—so much so that she had been given a written warning about it.
Finally, after talking to a counselor, she managed to put her finger on the problem: Disappointment!
Her next move was to decide whether she was going to live with the disappointment in her job or move on to another.

In everything we do, there is what we expect and what we actually get. When reality delivers less than you expected you can feel disappointment. When reality delivers more than you expected you can feel delight. There are those who say, “I don’t have expectations; that way I can never be disappointed.” Others suggest that we live like ...

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