COVID-19 related disappointment over cancelled or postponed events or vacations can lead to lasting feelings of sadness and may lead to depression if not managed in a healthy way. Keep in mind that while you may not have control over every situation, you may be able to control how you respond. The four steps below can help you work through feelings of disappointment.

Step 1: Allow yourself permission to feel sad or disappointed. Often, we are so quick to try to feel better, we rush through our negative emotions without processing them fully. Learning to process your sadness can help you become a stronger and more resilient person.

Step 2: Share with someone. Talking about your disappointment with a trusted friend or relative can help release some of your feelings. Since we are all in this together, they will likely be able to relate to how you are feeling. Also, your confidant may help you view your situation in a new light. If you are still unable to let go of your disappointment, consider speaking with a mental health counselor.

Step 3: Dig into your disappointment and take action. Take time to understand why you are disappointed. If you are feeling cheated because you didn’t get to see your daughter walk across the stage at her graduation, think about how she is feeling. Let her know how much you care about her and that you are also disappointed for her and yourself. Tell her how proud you are of her accomplishment and how much your entire family wanted to share in her achievement. Once both of you have identified why you are disappointed, the two of you can find other ways to celebrate and honor her and what you both value. For example, consider hosting a virtual graduation or putting together a surprise virtual graduation party. Taking action can help you and your daughter move past disappointment.

Step 4: See the bigger picture. While finding perspective can take time, it helps to look for the little wins that have developed from COVID-19. One example is that more people are working from home now and are not dealing with traffic, saving on gas, and perhaps most importantly they have more time. On a larger scale, with less cars on the road, smog has been reduced in large cities.

HMC HealthWorks provides comprehensive, whole-person programs tailored to support and treat all aspects of an individual’s wellbeing. HMC HealthWorks connects you with a multi-disciplinary team of providers along with invaluable resources to improve your physical and mental health so you can lead healthy and happy lives.

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