If we don’t come to expect, we will never be disappointed when our expectations of other people fail or fall short.
We all have and deal with expectations, particularly expectations of others. Expectations are part of life’s rich tapestry of course, but it’s only when others let us down and we end up dealing with disappointment that we have to deal with failed expectations too. Failed expectations will always bring about disappointment, there’s no getting away from that.
How do we deal with expectations and disappointments so we’re not carrying either for longer than we have to? I think the answer lies in our ability to experience and understand our emotional reactions to some of those disappointing experiences, through our expectations. We need to take the pressure off ourselves.
When we feel an experience, good or bad, we must emotionally figure out what the experience means, even if it comes in on the back of an expectation. Whatever the circumstances, however we fail, it’s important we stand back for a little while, so that we can work out a way forward.
As much as it’s tempting to make a quick decision to move on from a disappointing experience, it’s even more important we know how and why we went wrong. We need to be able to manage our emotions and we can only do that when we’re calm. Only then will we be in a position to move forward.
Unfortunately, we tend to take most of what we experience, personally. We tend to attribute negative experiences to personal failings, instead of separating the two issues. In reality of course, life simply does what it’s meant to do, but sometimes we add to that through our disappointment, by not thinking about the various possibilities or opportunities through our disappointment.
Perhaps we must come to look at the bigger picture and think differently. We must try another path that helps bring about the right outcome, even through those disappointments.