Tag Archive: disappointment

Feeling Needy. Yuck!

Some young children are pretty clingy.  Have you noticed?  You might have been one of them.  It could be because their Mom was sick when they were babies and couldn’t be around, so it takes them a while to trust that she will be around now.  It might be for some other reason.  The fact is that some of us are needy children. And then we work hard for the rest of our lives to change that.

Then there’s the rest of us – proud of our independence, never thinking for a moment that we’re in need of much from others. These are often the first-borns in a growing family, where Mom is just too busy to pay any attention to us. So, we learn to fend for ourselves, and take pride in this. And that’s great, as long as it isn’t another way to hide pain.

The sad truth is that all of us as adults sometimes feel needy. We may show it openly, or hide it behind a mask of solitude. It’s yucky feeling that way. I’m not talking about those times when you wanted companionship; I’m talking about those times when you felt small and abandoned.

When for instance, your best friend bails last minute on something important to you. Or when a project you’ve put your heart into fails, and everyone – all that suppoort you thought you had – dissappears.

Sometimes, you can’t help but go there in disappointment.  But you don’t have to stay there.

There is a way to deal with that yucky feeling of neediness that works every time. It’s a 3-step process that requires nothing other than you.

  1. Know when you’re feeling needy; when you’re dissappinted and sad. Igonring it will not make it go away; it will only make it go underground, resurfacing later. So, feel it and acknowlege it.
  2. Give it away. The way to do this is through empathy. If you were in your friend’s shoes, could you see why he or she might have fled?  Even if you wouldn’t do the same, it’s helpful to see how it happened.  Then, send some forgiveness his or her way, and let it go.  You might want to seal it with smudge.
  3. Turn your attention to something that feeds your spirit. A good book, a good movie, a walk in Nature, a new project or activity that has meaning to you.

This is the essence of self-respect, self-care and self-love. And it will never leave you feeling needy.


If you like this blog, you’ll love my newsletters “You are Enough Just as You Are” for a sample. It’s written only for my insiders who sign up, and provides weekly insights, not only from me, but from others I admire.

To sign up for my insider newsletter, click here.  If you find it doesn’t work for you, all you have to do to unsubscribe is click on the link at the bottom of the newsletter.

Looking forward to welcoming you to my growing list of insiders!

Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co .



Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co .

What to do when your plans go south

Imagine this: you plan for an event – say a workshop. You gather all the materials, secure the venue, the help and all needed resources. You practice and refine what you need to have in place.  Everyone’s committed. Sitters secured. Food ordered.


Everything is set. Then 24 hours before you all show up at the location, the location owner backs out.Now what? Well, whatever happens, guaranteed the result won’t be what you planned.  Those plans went south with the late venue cancellation.


You’ve probably experienced this first-hand.  Along with the gut-sinking disappointment and extreme need to gnash teeth and cry on a trusted friend’s shoulder.What now? Have you noticed that afterwards, looking back, it never seems as catastrophic as it did when it first happened? Life went on. All that planning and preparing that seems totally wasted in the moment ends up being put to good use in a different way. No one gets harmed beyond a minor inconvenience, and may even benefit from the change.  In fact, you might be the only one who notices.


And sometimes, better things happened because of how you responded to the unwanted change. To help you focus on the better possibilities of last-minute changes, here are 3 things to keep in mind for next time:


  1. Always expect the unexpected.  Any professional worth their salt does this; it’s what separates them from the newly trained arrival.  Anyone with training can deal with the every-day. Only a seasoned professional can deal with the unexpected last-minute surprise.

  3. Gain perspective. Most last-minute changes aren’t really earth-shattering. Even if they are, if you’ve done what you could to prepare, in the best way you could, then that’s the only thing that is truly under your control. The rest isn’t. Gaining this perspective helps to minimize pain and re-energize you for what you can do next.

  5. Look for the opportunity. Inside every change is a new opportunity. It might be a new learning, or a new way of doing what you were offering. Adding value and new interest. Sometimes, last-minute change highlights something that we hadn’t seen before that’s always been unnecessary. I had an aunt – fantastic cook – who always cut off the ends of a ham before baking it. Assuming this did something to enhance the flavor, I finally asked her why she did it. She thought about it and admitted she did it because he mother had.  As it happened, her Mom was there, and when asked, said it was because she only had one baking dish, and the hams were generally too big for it. So she cut them down at each end.

Life can be filled with adventure, if we let it. And adventure is always about venturing into unknown territory and learning from it. Seeing unwanted surprises as a kind of adventure can help to minimize the disappointment and get us going again soon after.

Saved by last-minute changes

Quote of the Week
Life is full of screwups. You’re supposed to fail sometimes. It’s a required part of the human existance. ― Sarah Dessen, Along for the Ride

At times we need more  – we know the logic, know what to do. And yet something is still blocking us.  I offer both one-on-one consultations and coaching packages.  For more information, visit my website www.thejoyofliving.co/services-and-programs or contact me directly at maryanne@thejoyofliving.co . Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist and Life Coach.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co .