Setting Expectations

You know how we stress ourselves on daily basis just by our own many little personal expectations? For example, (1) I want to get up by 7am to do some readings ahead of my meeting later, (2) I want to respond to that particular email before anybody else does, (3) I want to get the work done by 5pm so that I can leave on time, (4) I want to post about something I read yesterday, (5) I want to cook my husband’s favourite food today. I could go on, but you get the picture right? Then as you go through the day, the unexpected happens and ruins all your plans. And you get stressed about not meeting all your little personal expectations.

Then we ask ourselves, is it worth it? Is it worth the stress and anger when your own family, spouse and/or child (or children) are the ones that caused you not to meet your expectations? You are after all doing a favour for your loved ones which above anything else, matter most.

We are all wired to be ambitious, to achieve our goals and dreams because it makes us feel good about ourselves, we receive great pleasure from being successful where the successes are all defined by our own self. We are responsible for setting all those expectations. But the psychologist in the “Danish way of Parenting” book highlighted that human beings receive greater pleasure from making other people happy. True, but as human beings we tend to forget, we get so engrossed in our world and our little expectations that we forget what really matters most in our lives. And before you know it, the time is gone.

So let it go. Readjust your expectations according to what is realistic. If you couldn’t meet one or all of your many little expectations today because your loved ones need your attention and help, be happy about it. 10 years down the road when you look back, that’s all that matters. The only regret you will have is not because you couldn’t respond to that email first, but it’s the time lost helping the people that matter that we didn’t treasure today.

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