Sometimes I give my kids advice and hope that I can take it.

Recently I told my daughter that disappointments are common in life. The goal is not to eradicate disappointment because that’s impossible. No matter how hard we try or how awesome we are, things just don’t turn out the way we want all the time.

Since we can’t predict or prevent disappointment, all we can really do is develop the character it takes to withstand it. Met with a hand of recent disappointment, here is the plan I’ve devised to take my advice, because as far as I’m concerned, this is some stuff a person with character can do when life stinks:

1) Give yourself the grace to suck at life for a little bit.

2) Brush yourself off (aka. Get your crap together).

3) Soldier on.

Note: Self-destructive behaviors are off limits, but self-protective behaviors are allowed during the duration of suck-days. Self protective behaviors may include, but are not limited to: crying, grouching, and indulging in guilty pleasures.

Note: Guilty pleasures are not to be confused with self-destructive behaviors.

This is so important, that maybe we should take a lil quiz to make sure we understand. For each sentence, answer GP for guilty pleasure and SD for self-destructive.

  1. Make cookies.
  2. Repeatedly engage in addictive behaviors.
  3. Watch extra TV.
  4. Stop getting out of bed until you lose your job.
  5. Lock yourself in the bathroom and tell you children you have diarrhea so you can cry in peace.
  6. Cut your flesh with sharp or blunt objects.
  7. Get angry and listen to Rage Against the Machine while screaming along and moshing around your living room in a desire to recapture your squandered youth.
  8. Key a car and get arrested.
  9. Hide and read for a bit.
  10. Escape into non-reality in the hopes that ignoring reality will make it go away.

Hint: Even numbers are odd behaviors that may be classified as self-destruction. If you default to these, seek help. For real. That part isn’t a joke.

Fact: disappointment happens. It only matters what you do with it.

Don’t go nuts, folks. Suck at life as needed. Brush yourself off. Soldier on.


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