Are expectations ruining your happiness?


Many of us do it! Even though common wisdom says not to, it will set you up for failure heartbreak even, we still do it. We can’t help but to build small, big, deep, or minor EXPECTATIONS! But, is it really that bad to have expectations? Are there appropriate times to have expectations? Since we are so prone to doing this, how could it not be something good. Well, as I am learning more and more, nothing is all bad and nothing is all good.

So the question is really, if you have expectations, what are they? What do you really want to come from them? Which ever way you choose to look at it, expectations = preconceived resentment. I say this because whether it is expecting something good to happen or something bad to happen, we have already positioned ourselves and our minds and thoughts to take the stance that if it doesn’t happen (the good) or does happen (the bad) we are in our right to be angry and resentful. If we could actually have a blanket expectation for the good or positive, and say that any outcome is a learning experience, then expectations can actually be a positive experience. Positive in that all that time spent believing that something personally positive is just as likely to happen and if it doesn’t, no sweat there is a lesson still to be gained, can definitely make it a positive experience.

Listen to no one’s negative expectations. Who says is has any merit? AND, if you do, then how will you change the outcome? ~Caroll Atkins

I know some of you may be saying this is way to Polyanna for me. You may think: It’s simple, the moment you have any expectation of anyone or anything, there is bound to be disappointment. OR, in some cases we have a right to expect it to turn out positive especially if we have done or given our best in order to secure a positive outcome. It is not that you are wrong for feeling that way, it is more about whether you want to have peace and happiness in your life. Do you want to set yourself up to let uncontrollable outcomes control your life, your happiness and your general state of mind? See that’s really what we tend to do with expectations. Having them does not will anything to happen one way or another. Having them does not cause any changes in an inevitable outcome. They have no power to make anything right or wrong, positive or negative, good or bad, so they are essentially useless in that sense. The only thing they can do that will be beneficial to you, providing you are open to it, is teach you lessons in life and increase your wisdom of people and the world.

So, if you cannot get away from forming expectations, after all habits are hard to break, why not practice forming affirming ones. I love the expectations winners have. They picture themselves winning. If they don’t win, no problem, they try again till they do, that is why they are winners. They set their expectations high and won’t stop till they achieve it. For them it is about defining themselves by being at the top of their game. This push brings a satisfaction that is gratifying to them. They don’t spend time worrying about what they didn’t achieve, they focus on producing exceptional output again and again. They expect high standards from no one else but themselves.

Another expectation I love is the expectations that come from inventors, designers and innovators. These people have an expectation that things don’t have to look, function or be the way they are. There is always room for improvement. They are the ones who don’t wallow in the why, but embrace the why not and get down to the business of creating the reason why not. Their expectation is that we should all expect to have change in our lives. Change is good and change is necessary. Their expectations is that things should never stay the same as there is always room for improvement. As a designer, well you know I agree wholeheartedly.

When all is said and done, expectations can be good as well as not so good, on this we may have various arguments. However, the one thing that can encapsulate this argument and maybe we can all agree on and see the absolute positive merit is that we will all be in a good place if we worry less about any expectations, but welcome and cherish the idea of HOPE!

Peace & Light

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About Caroll Atkins

Loving Designing Living!! All forms of design intrigue me. As a graphic designer, I design for my livelihood (C.A.SlyDesigns) but as a writer, I do it for my living! At this time in my life, I MUST write. LoveDesignLife, is my joy and my gift to you. If my articles resonate with you, I pray they will also help you in life much as living them and writing about them has helped me. Today, it is no longer about thinking outside of the box. It’s bigger!! It is all about “Transcending the sphere!” coined by yours truly. I work hard to accomplish my goals. However, if I ever fall short I don’t worry I just eat cake cause tomorrow is another day!!
This entry was posted in Communication, Control, Enlightenment, Excellence, Happiness and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Are expectations ruining your happiness?

  1. jolynproject says:

    Interesting read! I was under the school of thought that expectations are negative because of the “preconceived punishment” as you put it but you brought up some good points for the positive side as well so I guess it’s just another word/idea that’s not black and white but gray.

  2. Expectations can go either way … if we set high expectations we all rise to the occasion … the longer one sets low expectations the longer one gets poor results …

    • My thought process on expectations in this blog entry is mainly to discuss that we not set them for others as a rigid rule that ends up evaluating a person’s worth. We may have desired outcomes for things in our lives that include the participation of others. We mostly choose them to aid in this because we feel they are capable and able. If they should fail us, then we are disappointed and even angry. There is nothing wrong with us feeling that way, it is what we do after this that sets the tone for how we go forward. If it impedes our progress, causes us not to trust others, turn us into loners or any number of other behaviors that are not conducive to a happy and healthy life, then we may want to limit this condition in our lives.

      Thanks Arelis!

      Peace & Light

  3. This was an interesting take on expectations. It is a perspective very different from my own and I enjoyed reading about another way to view the world.

  4. PK says:

    Yes our expectations can be good and bad. We must keep our expectations in perspective and be aligned with the person/thing we are expecting things from.

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