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Low expectations, for example, can mean you underachieve in life, or let others manipulate you. And what about high expectations? In a world focused on success and ambition, they can seem exemplary. But high expectations are often a form of trying to control both outcomes and other people, and can lead to considerable stress and mood swings. Expecting good things from life is indeed a sign of self-worth. We expect to meet someone who is six foot one, makes over fifty thousand a year, lives within a twenty minute drive of our front door, went to one of three universities, and likes to do yoga.

Life inevitably throws curve balls. So trying to force an unrealistic outcome from everything leads to being disappointed. And if you are living under the misguided notion that you actually control everything, every curve ball will leave you feeling to blame. This leads to a mood-killing downward spiral of self-criticism and judgement that can result in depression and anxiety. A study on ageing by a sociologist at Chicago University found that happiness levels tended to rise rather than fall with old age.

One of the main reasons cited? Lower expectations and more acceptance of the way things were. As for having high expectations from others, nobody lasts long on a pedestal without falling off. Worse, wanting certain things from others can blind you to what they actually can offer you. The end result can be troubled relationships , intimacy issues , and loneliness.

High expectations also dictate our response to the little things in life and our capacity to be resilient. For example, if you have the high expectation that things should always be easy and go your way in life, then something small like the train being two minutes late one morning can mean you show up at work in a funk that lasts all day. And the high expectation that friends should be endlessly loyal can mean one person not calling you on your birthday can result in months of upset, even if you later find out they were sick with flu.

Unrealistic expectations can also be a sign of borderline personality disorder , where you have a very distorted idea of other people and what they have to offer. By: Jon Newman. You might have grown up, for example, with a parent who demanded the best from you and others or who had tantrums when things did not go their way. It can be a worthwhile exercise to look at what your family still expects from you. And that is a fine line to walk.

Manual Expectations: We expect so much and give so little…

Carol Dweck, professor of psychology at Stanford University, said we had to differentiate between having low expectations for things like the weather or buying a car versus expectations or standards about ourselves. I like the way the psychologist Mary Grogan writes about expectations on the Web site Mindfood.

A sense of not being good enough is the common answer. So as we can see, there is no template for managing expectations.

It seems as if it is best to have low expectations of things out of our control, realistic expectations of things we can control to some degree and high expectations of ourselves. And, perhaps the greatest truth of all is: always expect the unexpected. Tell us what you think. Please upgrade your browser. We part more easily with what we possess, than with our expectations of what we wish for; because expectation always goes beyond enjoyment.

Letting go of expectations: Heather Marshall at TEDxGreenville 2014

Our desires always disappoint us; for though we meet with something that gives us satisfaction, yet it never thoroughly answers our expectation. It is a great obstacle to happiness to expect too much. Expect no more from the world than it is able to afford; it promises more than it bestows.

If you expect to have it all, you will have nothing. Learn to be happy with nothing — and you will have it all! Blessed is he who expects nothing, for he shall never be disappointed. We ought not to speculate on the future as if it were already past, nor build expectations on events which may eventually turn out very differently from what they seemed at first to promise.

Some people expect the door of opportunity to be opened with an electric eye. The true meaning of life is to plant trees, under whose shade you do not expect to sit. Men had drowned in seas like that.

Identify Outcomes and Expectations

Expectations are dangerous when they are both too high and unformed. There is no medicine like hope, no incentive so great, and no tonic so powerful as expectation of something tomorrow. A life that is burdened with expectations is a heavy life.

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Its fruit is sorrow and disappointment. High achievement always takes place in the framework of high expectation. Carry out a random act of kindness, with no expectation of reward, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you.

Expectations Proverbs

Those who live in expectation of an inheritance, must expect to receive the evil as well as the good therewith. Expectations were like fine pottery. The harder you held them, the more likely they were to crack. I think it would be worse to expect nothing than to be disappointed. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Myth: Happiness comes from having low expectations.

Like this post? Please share to your friends:. It is said that The real secret to success is enthusiasm Sometimes they turn out differently—much to your dismay. And then you feel disappointment. When you have expectations about an outcome and get a different result than planned or desired, your expectations go unmet.