The Unfulfilled Promise

If you’ve been on this earth for any period of time, there’s no doubt that you’ve experienced a setback, a disappointment or an unfulfilled promise from another person. And it’s probably been more than once!

As a coach, I work with people all the time who have either just experienced it, are experiencing it, or are probably about to experience it.  When I have my coaching hat on, the focus is on learning the lesson from the situation, understanding the role we may have played (if any) and moving forward.

But, there are times when all I want to do is toss my coaching hat to the side and put my “human” hat on.

What does that mean? It means you want to say “forget about the lesson”, “forget about being the bigger person”, “forget about taking the high road”, “forget about moving on”. It means saying “I’m actually pretty pissed off and I don’t want to just get over it”.

Believe me, I know that the only way to find joy, peace and stay focused on pursuing those goals that are important to you is to be able to not hold on to bitterness, anger, disillusionment and resentment. But I also know that sometimes you want to yell, scream, holler, use a few choice words not suitable for children and maybe even throw a thing or two against the wall. How do I know this? Because I’ve been there.

Any goal worth pursuing – whether personal or professional – requires other people to help you get there. Sometimes these people don’t deliver and you end up with an unfulfilled promise. And it hurts. What you depended on, what you bought into, what you put your faith into, what you believed in  - has now let you down.

They are a no-show in the area they were supposed to deliver on.

  • Maybe it was someone who promised to help you with your children.
  • Maybe it was someone who promised you would get that contract.
  • Maybe it was someone who promised you lots of referrals.
  • Maybe it was someone who promised you an absolute return on your money.
  • Maybe it was someone who promised to fund your project.
  • Maybe it was someone who promised to always support you.
  • Maybe it was someone who promised to look out for you and then used that trust to take advantage of you.
  • Maybe it was someone who promised to love you always.

Whatever the situation, it’s hard to ignore the feelings of betrayal, irritation and annoyance. And you know what? You shouldn’t.

Allowing yourself to feel your anger is okay when followed by a healthy way to release yourself from it. Over the years, I’ve heard of several things you can do to release the frustration:

  • Cry. Sometimes you just need to physically release it.
  • Write a letter outlining all the feelings you have – then burn it as a symbol of letting go.
  • Take a boxing class. Punch and kick your way to overcoming the anger. (Or any exercise program).
  • Talk with a counselor, trusted friend or your pastor.
  • Tell the person how you feel and decide how, and if, the relationship will continue.
  • Find the lessons in the situation.
  • Write down and celebrate successes you have in your life to reinforce trusting yourself again.
  • Feel free to answer honestly when someone asks about the situation. While you don’t have to be rude, unprofessional or have a nasty attitude, you can share your experience in dealing with the person.

Putting on the “human” hat is always an option to let you express your anger and disappointment. But, take heed, don’t linger there too long. Be sure to work on moving forward and overcoming.

Otherwise, you would have given your power over to the person who delivered the unfulfilled promise and they will continue to keep you from reaching your goals – even when they are long gone from your life.

RADICAL Success Coach Doreen Rainey is the founder of the annual Get RADICAL Women’s Conference on March 30 – April 1 featuring Jillian Michaels, Suze Orman, Lisa Nichols, Ali Brown & Monique Greenwood. Click here for more information and to register today. Buy 1 registration, get a General Registration FREE.

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© 2012 Doreen Rainey



About Doreen

RADICAL Success Coach Doreen Rainey helps her clients define success for themselves AND get the guts to go after it. Ready for your RADICAL change?

Find out more about her coaching programs, live events, her powerful breakthrough strategy session and her annual Get RADICAL Women’s Conference, March 21 - March 23, 2014.

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