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Did you have a big dream that never came true?

Have you been let down by a relationship that didn’t go the way you hoped?

Did you get what you thought would be the perfect job, only to wind up disillusioned?

Did you expect to be a parent, only to discover it wasn’t meant to be?

Did you hope to have perfect health, only to realize it wasn’t meant to be?

If any of these common life disappointments sound familiar, you’ve probably experienced the pain of what my friend Christine Hassler calls an “Expectation Hangover.” And just so you know, you are SO not alone. Expectation Hangovers can be some of the most traumatic of life’s many challenges.

I vividly remember many of my own Expectation Hangovers. I’m sure my loving parents meant well when they raised me to believe the world was my oyster. As the oldest child doted on by adoring parents, I grew up thinking the world would treat me as lovingly as my parents did, so imagine my surprise when I wound up in medical school, where I felt judged and criticized by my professors, who were regularly scolding me for my stupidity and incompetence. I also figured all men would treat me like the princess my father had led me to believe I was, so imagine my confusion and hurt when I wound up in a marriage with a man who didn’t dote on me like my parents did.

By the time I was thirty-three years old, I was very successful in my career as a doctor, but I was divorced, professionally disillusioned, and taking seven medications for a host of health conditions my doctors led me to believe were incurable. Saddled with a serious case of entitlement, I felt like the Universe had let me down. By the time I was thirty-six, I wound up with one dark night of the soul after another that culminated in a massive Expectation Hangover. The compounding losses left me humbled, emotionally paralyzed, and on my knees.

I thought I might find relief by quitting my job as a physician, selling my oceanfront house, and moving to the country, where I planned to launch my new career as a writer by penning my first masterpiece. But things didn’t go as I planned, and that book never got published after being rejected by over thirty publishers. When I finally did publish my first book, nobody really wanted to read it. All of my big dreams of being a successful author who paid the bills while doing what she loved were dashed, and I wound up with a serious case of what I termed PPD (post-publishing depression), which I now know is just another name for an Expectation Hangover.

By forty-one, I found myself $200,000 in debt, with no agent, no publisher, and another failing relationship. My life had strayed so far from the fairy-tale life I had expected that I barely recognized it. Where had I gone wrong? My self-esteem took a major hit, and the shell of my ego started to crack. What I hadn’t anticipated was that underneath that shell, the real gold had been buried all along.

Mining the Gold of Disappointment

I had to mine the gold from my Expectation Hangovers one teensy nugget at a time before my life started to turn around. The process was slow, painful, and filled with self-judgment, disillusionment, frustration, roadblocks, and tests of my faith. Because my journey eventually yielded a great deal of personal, spiritual, and professional satisfaction, I can’t regret a second of it, but I can say that I wish I had been blessed with Christine Hassler’s book Expectation Hangover back when all this was happening. It might have saved me years of unnecessary suffering! This book is full of so many practical tools–many of them extremely loving and comforting to the tender, disappointed self. I am blessed to know a lot of spiritual teachers, but I really mean it when I say that Christine is one of the spiritual teachers I most trust. She is real, human, raw, vulnerable, brilliant, and wise beyond her young years. I seriously love this book, and was honored to have the privilege of writing the foreword for it. (Order your copy of the book here—and get access to a teleclass Christine and I did together.)

If you’re wallowing in an Expectation Hangover of your own and you’re ready to press “fast-forward” on this phase of your journey, let Christine help you. She will guide you through your Expectation Hangover with love, compassion, and sensitivity to how much you might be hurting right now. Nobody is going to expect you (or allow you) to skip your painful emotions with a “spiritual bypass.” But you will be invited to mine the gold from your disappointment, as long as you’re ready to face the honest truth about yourself and about what your soul may be here on this earth to learn.

Managing Your Expectations

After gleaning the gems from your Expectation Hangover, you’ll not only heal from your disappointment but learn how to minimize future disappointment. You’ll be inspired to live your life in a whole new way, and you’ll become much more open to whatever smorgasbord of life experiences the Universe dishes up, rather than getting upset when you don’t immediately get what you ordered off life’s menu.  Expectation Hangover is your road map to navigating any disappointment you may be experiencing. I promise you that you are being called to participate in this adventure, and your mission, should you choose to accept it, will be more wondrous, magical, and filled with awe, mystery, purpose, and fulfillment than anything you could have dreamed up yourself. So take a deep breath, strap on your seatbelt, muster up your moxie, and get ready to let your Expectation Hangover take you on the ride of your life.

If you feel inspired to dive into the realm of soul growth around your Expectation Hangover, you can also engage with Christine on the road during her book tour! Here’s a list of live events, where you can work directly with Christine and drink up her sweet presence and her unprecedented wisdom.

Christine’s Book Tour Events:

Oct 8 The New York Expectation Hangover Tour Event 7:00 – 9:30PM
General Assembly, New York City (East), 902 Broadway, 4th Floor, New York 10010

Oct 11 October 11th Workshop: Overcoming Expectation Hangovers in Love and Relationships with Christine Hassler and Rachel DeAlto 2:00 – 5:00PM
Naam Yoga, 141 W 72nd St #1, New York, NY 10023

Oct 14 The San Francisco Expectation Hangover Tour Event 6:30 – 8:30PM
Levo League, 36 Clyde Street, San Francisco, CA 94107

Oct 16 The LA Expectation Hangover Book Launch Party 6:30 – 10:00
Full Circle, 305 Rose Avenue, Venice, California 90291

Oct 21 Chicago Exclusive Workshop: Overcoming Expectation Hangovers 6:00 – 10:00
This event is happening at a private residence in Lincoln Park—address will be emailed to you after you purchase your ticket!

Oct 22 The Chicago Expectation Hangover Tour Event 7:30 – 9:30PM
Bodhi Spiritual Center, 2746 N Magnolia, Chicago, IL 60614

Oct 24 Austin Book Signing and Launch Party

Oct 27 Dallas Expectation Hangover Tour Event


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1 Comment

  1. Renel Rytting

    I”m the first to comment? I just found you, Lissa,….on the Internet (thank you Ted Talks)! I have a million thoughts and questions, but the one thing I though after reading Christine’s list of events, at the end of your Oct. 7 blog post: why doesn’t anyone (like you, her, Oprah) ever come to Utah?? LOL! It’s an enlightenment desert out here (and, it’s literally a desert, too)! I’m inspired by your story and I’m about to read your books and Christine’s and about 100 others. I will be watching you (in a good way), Lissa! Thank you!


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