How Can You “Just Get Over It”?

You encounter a setback or a loss. Someone, a well-meaning someone, tells you to “just get over it.” How can you? The quick answer is you don’t. (Well, I don’t.) What we do instead is move through the change model.

Let me unpack that well-meaning, albeit wrong, sentence.

“Just” is not a useful word to describe any emotion.

How many times have you heard, “I just want to thank you?” I have, too many times. If I’m in teacher/coach/consultant mode, I ask, “Okay, please do. You don’t have to use the “just” word.”

If I’m not in that mode, I thank the person. (That’s because the context is wrong for me to offer feedback.)

“Just” minimizes your experience and emotions. “Just” says, “Don’t pay attention to the rest of what I say. I don’t really mean it.” Except, people do mean it. Especially the thank you part. We don’t realize how the word “just” minimizes our receipt of that experience.

It’s even worse when someone says, “Just get over it.” What they might mean is, “I’ve gone through the change model and I have my transforming idea. You should use that transforming idea.”

That transforming idea works for that person. It might even work for you or me, once we are ready for it. It might take us a while to get to the point where we can see a transforming idea.

Instead of “getting over it,” maybe we need to find our next steps.

Here are some questions I’ve found useful when I want to find the next step.

  • Am I ready to look ahead to something else? I might not be ready yet.
  • How can I create an idea that helps me look ahead to something, instead of being stuck in the loss?
  • If I have no ideas, what would my future look like I can create some ideas?

That third question might seem a little strange. I have found imagining the future state helps me generate alternatives to achieve that state. I might not stick with those ideas once I start. I might transform those alternatives. However, the imagining helps me imagine something other than the loss state.

Every setback or loss is different. When I didn’t sell a book idea to a publisher, I decided to self-publish it. I moved through the change model fast. I “got over” the disappointment of being rejected.

I’m still moving through the change model for my vertigo. My transforming ideas appear to have a shelf life. I need to adapt to my changing reality often. “Just get over it” doesn’t work at all—for my feelings and for my actions.

Instead, I find it useful to acknowledge my current reality. (I sometimes miss clues, and that’s because I’m human.) Then, I can generate some ideas and apply the experimental and growth mindset to create new possibilities.

Every so often, I need to imagine a future state that accounts for the loss. I can’t go backward. I can only go forward. Unless you have a time machine, that’s true for you, too.

That is the question this week: How can you “just” get over it?

4 thoughts on “How Can You “Just Get Over It”?

  1. netmouse

    Somethings you can’t get over. At all. That goose egg on the head is from banging it against a wall.

    I put my hands in an expert dentist, periodontist. He tricked me into performing an extra procedure I never needed. Perhaps upselling to make more money. No plan, no explanation beforehand. So convincing, and in minutes he had filed down my teeth in a whole mouth “bite adjustment”. Something not done today if you have no symptoms, people live through old age just fine with imperfect teeth. Now I have a very deep bite with teeth hitting each other. My teeth used to “fit” together nicely, now my jaw has wide swings causing problems.

    Once gone, it can’t be put back. Now facing recommendations for braces (2-3 years then permanently a retainer, tightening pain every 2 weeks, $7,000) which at age 71, I did not envision spending my retirement this way. A specialist recommended some mouth guards, some very expensive, that may in the end not help and requires wearing plastic all night for life, and those possible toxins.

    This is someone I’d really like to sue, but no attorney will take on a dental malpractice case unless your face is paralyzed – their websites say so or they reject the case on this basis. No discussion, can’t even debate the validity of the case. One said such a case can cost several hundreds of thousands of dollars. But I know most cases do not go to trial, and there is a settlement early on. Add in that the culprit is a very well known dentist who is senior and head of education at key dental schools. Everyone knows him, and they network for referring patients, no one wants to cross him. I do have a new periodontist who was a student. He is a talker and says how students can’t stand the guy, and if working for him, leave quickly.

    Anyway, this belongs on another blog, but there is none.

    1. johanna Post author

      Netmouse, how frustrating. I had an orthopedist who gave me very bad advice. I complained to the Massachusetts medical board. I bet dentists have something like that, too. If you want, lodge a complaint with them. My complaint went nowhere. On the other hand, we now have the capability to write reviews of providers (on Yelp, I think, if nowhere else). You might do that. If you want.

      Yes, you are in a no-win situation. You can’t “get over it.” You might be able to manage the problem, but not solve it. Best wishes to you.

      1. netmouse

        Thanks, Johanna. Yes the state has a dental board to file complaints. They can rule to have the cost of service refunded. I asked the dentist for that and let him know what he did wrong. He did agree to refund my money, asking I sign a release (to not sue, I guess). I said I would NOT sign a release, and he refunded the money anyway. The board can stop someone from working until certain criteria is met, but this guy is 71 and should retire anyway, and too powerful perhaps for anything to be really done to him. I’ve held back because one attorney said if you file you can’t then sue, but the board website seems to indicate otherwise.

        So I will file a complaint, that provides some satisfaction, but may take a year or longer for the wheel to begin moving. But it is something, even if I must live with the damage. I’d like for him to at least be reprimanded by the state, I hope he feels some humiliation but so far he is incapable of seeing he did anything wrong, a real case of denial. But the state is more powerful than me, so their words may sting.

        I did post a searing post at Yelp, and at several medical review websites like Healthgrades, ratemd, vitals.

        1. johanna Post author

          Good for you, for taking as many actions as possible. You’re right, you’ll never get over this. You might, at some point, be able to move onwards. (Not move on, but choose another path.) Maybe.

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