Chetan's Blog

The Mercedes Blogs II- Dealing with Disappointment

Hi Guys,

It’s been a while. Sorry for the delay, was caught up in too many things workwise, and even with the family. The kids had their summer vacation, so we had to spend more time with them too.

What am I going to talk about this time? Well, Mercedes released a new video, about a Google employee, who talks about how the car saved his life once. 

The video is here:


In a candid chat he describes how he wasn’t paying attention while driving as he approached a static car in front of him. His Mercedes’ sensors kicked into action and automatically stopped the car from hitting another car in front. You can tell from his voice that he is being genuine, and grateful that he avoided a major crash. Something about the video works; perhaps it is the real person, his family shots or the feeling that this could happen to any of us.

Like I said, I am not obligated to talk about Mercs in this blog, but I really believe this is one cool feature to have in a car.

But what touched me about the video was the fragility of life. We have a world around us – our jobs, families, aspirations and dreams, and in one moment it can all change. We spend years trying to build something, but it could be gone in seconds. A job loss, health issues, relationship break-ups – can all change everything in an instant. Has that ever happened to you?

The question then is, how does one deal with this disappointment? How does one accept a sudden, big loss? It is a question I grapple with, for even small setbacks can cause a lot of distress.

There are no easy answers. Neither am I an expert in handling disappointment. I am also learning, and would love your thoughts on how you handle setbacks in your life.

Here is what I can say based on my experiences so far. The fact is, when disaster happens, one has to struggle to cope. There is a period of suffering that cannot be avoided. It is an emotional time, and as they say in yoga, one has to ‘breathe through it’. That is to have awareness about yourself, and not trying to snap out of it. You cannot snap out of it. The only thing to note is that this is not a time to make big decisions. You have to let the emotions pass, or at least subside a little.

For eventually, the human spirit is resilient. It can handle the toughest of times. In history, humanity has suffered immensely due to natural disasters or wars. It just cannot do it in an instant. The time varies for people, but eventually, people come to terms with a situation.

Once emotions settle, one has to reflect on what happens next. One needs to make a new path, based on the new reality. Whether it is a break-up, or a job loss or you lose someone close – your life has to discover new meaning. Once you accept this reality and want the answers – they come. Slowly, life changes again. You meet new people. You find other worthwhile things to do. Life goes on.

Disappointment is one of the nastiest aspects of the human condition. Some say non-attachment is the answer. It may be true. But to live a life devoid of all attachments isn’t quite possible too. Hence, disappointment will come into your life, at regular intervals. Accept it, and it becomes a little easier to deal with.

You are welcome to put your thoughts in the comments section. Similarly, I’d invite you to read other people’s insightful comments too.

Lots of love,

Chetan Bhagat

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