Acquire the Ability to Disappoint People!
"Let This Be You!" cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward
To disappoint is to fail to fulfill the hopes or expectations of someone.
One of the strongest messages I received growing up in the church is that I should not disappoint people.
Oh, it's okay to disappoint sinners. Just don't upset your brothers and sisters and those in authority over you.
I grew up the oldest of five kids. I'm super responsible. My goal was to never disappoint my parents. As a good Christian, my goal was to never disappoint the church. I never disappointed anybody.
My family had hopes for me. The church had hopes for me.
And I never ever disappointed them.
Until I did.
I was about 27 years old when I knew my time to disappoint others was coming. I experienced a major spiritual crisis and everything changed. I just knew I was going to have to start disappointing people, letting them down, and not fulfilling their hopes and dreams and wishes for me. Not because I wanted to, but because I had to take care of myself.
This is what I decided: I will stop disappointing myself rather than others. I will commit myself to personal transformation and pay the price.
When you set out to be true to yourself and commit yourself to change, the by-product of this is you're going to disappoint people, especially the ones who care about you the most.
So the primary decision is to commit to authenticity and the change this requires.
The secondary decision, or by-product, is to accept that you will disappoint people.
I know it's scary. Your decision can potentially threaten relationships you care about.
When someone says, ‚ÄúYou're a disappointment to me.‚Äù I think and sometimes say, ‚ÄúI didn't mean to disappoint you. I want to live with integrity. I can't help if this disappoints you. This is your problem, not mine!‚Äù
I disappointed people when I was 27. I disappoint people now.
The disappointment is based on an illusion anyway. Their expectations on you are their expectations, their hopes, their fantasies, not yours. These fantasies really have nothing to do with you, but with their desires.
Commit to change. You will disappoint others, but you will not disappoint yourself.