Who said that your relationship has to be perfect?
Or that the sun has to shine every day while you’re on vacation?
Who says that your kids have to be well-behaved all the time and bring home nothing but the best grades from school?
That’s not what life is like. You may have the greatest expectations, and you may even feel you deserve perfection, but if you do, you will surely be disappointed.
Social media is often a driving force in people’s unrealistic expectations because it gives you an effortless peek into other people’s happiness. But remember: People rarely post when they’re at a low point in life, and a post of a cheerful photo with their dog doesn’t mean they had a great day. Curb your expectations.
Do you expect to have a flawless partner, or a relationship that is devoid of any conflict? Do you expect that your marriage will be a happy one without your ever putting in any work because you’ve found your perfect match?
Expectation kills everything! Expectation kills happiness.“Expectation is the root of all heartache,”quoted by Shakespeare, has a substantial meaning that is widely supported by psychology. The desire for something to happen or someone to do something in a certain way when you can’t control the outcome leads to frustration.
It’s time to do away with expectations. This will allow us to experience less anxiety, less stress, frustration, anger, depression, and other negative emotions. We can expect things like respect from others, but if we base how we feel on whether we get what we expect, we set ourselves up for disappointment.
What is it you need that really matters to a good life?
My partner often ask me what I think makes a great day. He finds my answer slightly boring, if not incredible. But I’ll tell you what makes a good day for me: It’s a good day when everybody returns home safely and healthy from their endeavours, and when no disastrous event has befallen any of our family members.
That’s all it takes. And I can tell you, I have lots of good days in my life.
You may have different needs or expectations. But your expectations ultimately determine what’s a great day and how many great days you are granted—or you grant yourself—in life.
“Acceptance is the key to handling life well.”
“When we don’t accept an undesired event, it becomes Anger; when we accept it, it becomes Tolerance.”
“When we don’t accept uncertainty, it becomes Fear; when we accept it, it becomes Adventure.”
“When we don’t accept other’s bad behaviour towards us, it becomes Hatred; when we accept it, it becomes Forgiveness.”
“When we don’t accept other’s Success, it becomes Jealousy; when we accept it, it becomes Inspiration.”
- References: Pressman, S. D., Kraft, T. L., & Cross, M. P. (2015). It’s good to do good and receive good: The impact of a ‘pay it forward’ style kindness intervention on giver and receiver well-being. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 10(4), 293–302. https://doi.org/10.1080/17439760.2014.965269