The world of Expectations is one in which fortunes can be suddenly made and just as suddenly lost.
Happiness is equal to reality minus expectations.
Let that sink in.
We all have a hard time accepting the truth or digesting reality when the situation, circumstance, person or outcome is not how we expected it to be.
What screws us up most in our lives is the picture in our head of how it is supposed to be.
Now, I’m not here to tell you to never expect anything, as many books or advices or suggestions or any other media might; but I’m here to tell you that you can manage those expectations and be prepared for any result whatsoever.
I doubt that I’m the only one around who has had conflicting feelings and thoughts about expectations. On one hand, I have recognized the power of expectations in bringing things to pass. But on the other hand, expectations can lead to disappointment and problems. Expecting someone to do something that doesn’t happen often leads to huge conflicts. Relationships, for example, are often filled with such unfulfilled expectations. Personal expectations of how the future will work out often leave one let down. The results range from mild disappointment to fierce anger and great pain.
Even so, we all have expectations and we pretty much have them all the time. It is easy to fix the responsibility for failed expectations on other people or forces outside of ourselves. But, clearly, we created these expectations. They are a product of our own thoughts, long held as beliefs or newly-minted in the moment.
We almost never think about events that come out as the opposite of what we expected. After all, we expected that it will turn out just fine. Consequently, we often fail to see how much of our lives happens in accordance with our expectations. We live in a sea of unconscious expectations that carry us along in everything we do. In fact, our whole world view is a mass of mostly unconscious expectations.
Everything from the water coming out of the faucet to the buttons fastening our coats happen pretty much as we expect. And whose expectations are they anyway? I never doubted as a child that I would go to college because that was the family expectation. We are told to expect, and we do, that our money will be safe in the bank, we will get excellent service in a 5-star hotel, that our plane will arrive safely at our destination (luggage is a different matter). From whatever source, once we make it our own, the expectations clearly have a momentum of their own that carries great power. Wonderful, majestic things happen when we maintain expectations of wonderful, majestic outcomes. Because expectations sometime work as a driving force to do and be our best in everything. For the most part the world seems to be our garden, ready to harvest. Without these expectations we would have to sort everything out from scratch. But what happens when these expectations seem to fail? Our belief in a certain “reality” crumbles and even our own identities get disturbed by failed expectations. For myself, I have spent a lot of time trying to limit my expectations so that I would not have to deal with the misery of disappointment.
I learnt that it was me who had to manage her thoughts accordingly.
I had to look at what an expectation is. First off, it is not a promise. It is not a guarantee of a specific outcome. It is not a demand made to the Universe that our desires be met. As I looked more deeply I saw that it is simply how we are framing both the present and the future for ourselves. It is a creative act, based on past experience, energized by emotions and feelings, and modified by our imagination and desires. As such our own personal energies are being focused on the creation of that which is “expected”. I have often experienced disappointment verging on anger at getting a poor response. It has been a real challenge to me to look at my expectations and to take responsibility for them. I had to learn to accept that my expectations are my creation, focusing my energies on what I want and only that; that there was no blame to be spread because my expectations were unfulfilled; and that it was only disappointment that I was experiencing – the end of the world would come later.
This is all leading to my awareness of the necessity for taking responsibility for our expectations and for using them creatively. As an adventurer I often delight in not knowing what happens next. I make the choice to not have expectations of what situations I may encounter. However, I also make the choice to expect that I will be clever enough to handle whatever arises and to expect that when it’s all over everything will have worked out for the best. By treating expectation as a valuable tool when used consciously instead of as a compact with the gods, often betrayed, we can put the magic of expectation to use.
It seems to me that consciously chosen expectation is a notch higher than intention in the realm of focusing energies. It has a way of locking out debilitating doubt that other high-focus mental techniques, like faith and hope, do not have. When used consciously, expectation is a way of focusing one’s own energies in the most powerful, forceful way towards a desired result.
We have to remember that it is not the only influence in any given situation. It may not even be the most influential. But it is our way of being the most effectual.
Learn the act of appreciation. Be real and know your self worth.
Real isn’t how you are made. It is a thing that happens to you. Sometimes it hurts, but, when you are Real you don’t mind being hurt. It doesn’t happen all at once. YOU Become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real, you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand. Once you are Real you can’t be unreal again. It lasts for always.
—–Have hope.Keep Faith—–