Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Sometimes we create our own heartbreaks through expectation. Unknown

Yesterday I was in the bank; the machine won’t take bills if they are crinkled so I went to the teller. “What’s it like outside?” he asks.

“It’s not snowing, blowing or raining, so a beautiful November day,” I say.

A beautiful November day is not like a beautiful July, August, or September day. If the only beautiful days in our life are sunny and warm, we will be disappointed. Many of us go through life disappointed. Our frame of reference is skewed.

We go on a trip and expect romance when we haven’t had romance in our relationship for years. We expect to be limber and strong but we aren’t doing anything to remain limber and strong. We can’t live up to the expectations we can create in our minds. We don’t look as good in the dress as we’d hoped. We forget bugs come with a day at the beach. We are disappointed when there is seaweed in the ocean.

Does the man or women in relationships have the most unmet expectations? I understand men want women to remain the girl they met and fell in love with. Women want men to grow into the man they knew he could be when they fell in love.

Women can’t remain the girl they were. But, we can remain happy, giving, appreciating, respectful, kind, generous, and loving. What if we think we have remained all those things but our partner thinks we haven’t?

Men fear disappointing us because disappointment opens the path to irrelevance and ultimately rejection. We will be disappointed and we will disappoint. Don’t we need to accept that it is impossible to be what someone else or even what we want every moment of the day?

Don’t expect too much. It’s always better to feel surprised than to feel disappointed. Unknown

This is where unmet expectations come in. We need to cut our partners and ourselves some slack. Our hormones affect how we feel about ourselves and others, our hunger can affect how we react, and life can be disappointing in many ways. We aren’t where we thought we’d be in life, and retirement looms. Even if we did achieve what we wanted, that is part of the glorious past, and what of the future?

Can we make peace with what is, who we are, who our partner is, what our life is, not what we think it should be because of romantic lies in books, movies, and songs?

Every time I see a picture of myself posted on the Toastmasters club page I am disappointed. What do I think I look like? In ten years I will look back at those pictures and they will look pretty good to me. Pictures I see from ten years ago look great.

If we don’t enjoy today for what it is, looking back in ten years we will think we were so young, why didn’t we enjoy it more? There was so much we could do, enjoy, and experience. Why didn’t we do, enjoy, and experience it?

My daughter keeps telling me, “You and Dad shouldn’t wait too long to go to England.”

She’s right. That trip to England is also fraught with unmet expectations. Can it possibly be what we want it to be? Is that one of the reasons we put it off?

Is the secret to a great life under-promising and over-delivering, instead of over-promising and underdelivering?

When you release expectations, you are free to enjoy things for what they are instead of what you think they should be Mandy Hale

When you learn to accept instead of expecting, you’ll have fewer disappointments. Unknown

Let go of your expectations. Let go of your attachment to outcomes. Unknown

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

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Loving What Is: Four Questions That Can Change Your Life Paperback – Dec 23 2003

by Byron Katie (Author), Stephen Mitchell (Author) 4.4 out of 5 stars 91 ratings


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