The presents have been unwrapped. Yeah, there was something you really wanted – but didn’t get. It left a mark, too. It’s one of life’s great truths: you can’t get what you want every time.

You don’t believe you deserve to have it or you think you’re incapable of claiming it. Take a long look in the mirror.


Mick Jagger and Keith Richards presented this wise observation in their 1969 classic, “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”…

You can’t always get what you want.
But if you try sometimes, well you might find
You get what you need.

Now, I don’t know what was on the boys’ minds when they wrote the song, but it really doesn’t matter.

For my money they offered one of life’s great truths. And I think anyone dealing with a mood or anxiety disorder ought to consider accepting it.

Wants and disappointments

So here we are – enduring varying degrees of you name it: depression, anxiety, fear, avoidance, mania, obsession, compulsion, trauma, stress.

I’d say there are billions of heartfelt wants flying around out there. But as life would have it, there are just about as many disappointments.

There has to be a way to enhance the chances of success for our legitimate petitions. And there has to be an avenue to perspective when we’re turned away.

Yep, the list…

11 things to think about when you can’t get what you want

get what you want

“Seriously? It still won’t go down the way I want. Okay, get settled and reevaluate.”

Before we get after it, I want to share a funny story.

It was 1984 and I was sitting at an AA table. I had put a cork in the bottle only six weeks earlier, so I was, shall we say, raw.

Well, it was my turn to share and I said I was ticked off about not being able to do some of the things I wanted to do for fear of being triggered.

When I finished my whining the surly program vet to my left elbowed me in the arm and signaled me to come close. I did and she calmly whispered, “Tough sh**, you can’t.”

Lesson learned.

The 11

Okay, so let’s get after the 11 things to think about when you can’t get what you want. And keep in mind, some of the suggestions assume a spiritual take on self and life…

  1. Your planning and preparation aren’t up to snuff. Get busy.
  2. You planned and prepared well, but your strategy is off. Get settled and reevaluate.
  3. You planned and prepared well, but you aren’t trying hard enough. Maybe you believe you’re entitled?
  4. You don’t believe you deserve to have it or you think you’re incapable of claiming it. Take a long look in the mirror.
  5. It isn’t good for you, so you aren’t supposed to have it. Work on trust.
  6. For whatever reason your timing isn’t right. “Not yet, but don’t give up.”
  7. Something more suitable – even better – is coming your way. Be patient.
  8. You already have it, but don’t recognize it. Take off the blinders and look around.
  9. Someone else is the rightful owner. Okay, so it wasn’t meant for you.
  10. At this point in time you can’t handle having it. In what ways do you need to grow?
  11. You can’t have it and that’s just the way it goes. Time to move on. (Reference my AA story.)

Can you come up with more?

Give it another go

Of course, my priority will always be those enduring mood and anxiety disorders. But no matter one’s circumstances, these are intensely longing and “I want” times.

How well we know that disappointment follows many of our petitions. However, it’s up to us to look beyond the immediate barrier of “no” – get settled and reevaluate…

But it won’t mean a hang-dang if we aren’t willing to give it another go.

How ‘bout taking a look at more Chipur mood and anxiety info and inspiration articles.

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