10 Tips for Recovery After a Major Loss or Disappointment

February 20th, 2013

Sometimes life throws curves at us that take the wind from our sail. If we aren’t careful we can allow the injury to haunt us for life; never regaining what we have lost.

  • Have you lost a job recently?
  • Have you had a business failure?
  • Did you suffer from divorce?
  • Has the person you trusted the most hurt you the deepest?

What steps should you take to get back on track after a significant loss?

Here are 10 suggestions to consider during a recovery process:

(Choose the ones that apply to your situation)

Reconnect with God – This is always a wise idea, but it becomes necessity at times like this. Some people grow closer to God during a trial (that’s the best approach). Some, however, allow a trial to distract them from their relationship with God. If that’s your story, be like the prodigal and return to a waiting Father.

Evaluate your life – Use this time to reevaluate the decisions you have made in life and, if appropriate, what got you in the situation you are in today. Are there changes that you need to make? If so, be willing to change. If you did nothing wrong in this case, release yourself from responsibility.

Create some new dreams – Don’t allow past mistakes to keep you from discovering your passions in life. Keep those creative forces going in your mind so you’ll be ready when the next big opportunity comes along.

Call in the advisors – Others can usually see things we cannot see. They approach our life from a different perspective. Give someone you trust, who has your best interest at heart, access to the painful part of your life.

Don’t take your pain and anger out on others – It doesn’t make things better (usually worse) and it hurts people who did nothing to deserve it. Don’t hold your past experiences against others who weren’t even there.

Take a break – Don’t expect to recover immediately. Your struggles probably didn’t start overnight and they will not end overnight. Give yourself time to heal. Rest.

When it’s time, be willing to risk again – Yes, you may get hurt again, but just as life is full of disappointments, it’s also full of joy and discovery. Remember that everyone is not the same and every situation is different. Your next great opportunity may be waiting for your next step of faith.

Don’t let failure or disappointment in life define you – Be defined by God’s love for you and His plan for your life. He has one you know!

Do something – Rest yes, but at some point, just do something to stay busy and occupy your mind. It’s true that the “idle mind is the devil’s workshop”. If you lost your job, find somewhere to volunteer until you find another job. If you lost a relationship, find non-sexual relationships through church or civic activities to keep from being alone.

Get back in the game – Choose your next steps carefully and don’t keep repeating the same mistakes, but at some point it will be time to enjoy life again. Life was not meant to be lived on the sidelines.


Are there any you would add to this list?

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