“Expectation is the root of all heartache.” – William Shakespeare
There are some things in life that poison your soul and damage your happiness.
Expectations are what shapes your life. They can make you or break you given the amount of influence they have on your actions.
You need to be careful, and more importantly, aware of the expectations you have because the wrong ones can damage you and make your life difficult.
Negative expectations and toxic desires that lead to negativity tend to make people live unhappy lives.
Here are the expectations that most commonly ruin lives and damage happiness and our advice on how to overcome them.
1. Expecting for opportunities to find you
No, that just doesn’t work that way. In fact, it is the the opposite way around. You are the hunter-gatherer who needs to hunt for said opportunities.
Unless pursued actively, opportunities won’t just come knocking on your door. After all even “God helps those who help themselves.”
Like Jerry Seinfeld said in a very famous TV interview, “Bust your ass (working), pay attention (to your family, superiors and well- wishers) and fall in love (with whatever you do to earn).”
If you don’t do just that, opportunities to be successful just won’t find you.
Try new things and turn up in places where you might get noticed. Meet new people, people different than you. Put yourself out there for a chance to find an opportunity.
2. Expecting to be liked by everyone
There are always going to be people who will dislike you. Best case scenario, it won’t be your fault at work; it might just be their past screw-ups, insecurities and envy making them dislike you.
In most situations, you cannot change that and neither you should try. Just don’t worry about that.
If you really expect for literally everyone to like you, you are setting yourself up for a big failure.
Stop caring about everyone liking you and concentrate on the people in your life whose opinions and liking or disliking you actually want to take in consideration. Focus on the people that DO matter to you.
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3. Expecting life to be fair
“This time it’s all me. Life isn’t like in the movies. Life… is much harder.” – Alfredo; Cinema Paradiso
Life might not be the bed of roses you expect it to be. And it is hard for some people to accept that reality that, in fact, life is just simply not easy nor it is going to be. A lot of people just pull themselves back and watch and wait for things to work out just fine.
The reality is, most of the time they won’t. Unless you go out there and take different actions, things won’t just play out right just because you are THAT lucky. You are in control of your own life. You decide how it plays out for you.
4. Expecting people to read your mind
Unless you are absolutely blunt and honest, and you say it how it is, it is really unfair from you to expect for people to know what you want.
This can hurt all your areas in life, and especially romantic relationships.
Be kind but be honest, transparent and blunt to your partner and to people around you and expect the same of them and you will see just how your relationships get better.
Don’t assume that people know exactly what you want and what you expect from them. Remember, communication is key!
5. Expecting for everyone to agree with you
Every individual is different and is entitled to their opinion. Their opinions, a lot of times, won’t be the same as your own. And that is perfectly okay.
What you can do is expect them to be respectful of your opinion and acknowledge it, but you have to be the same way too. Remember, their opinion might be wrong to you, but your opinion is wrong to them as well.
It is important to find a compromise and move on from the subject.
6. Expecting that material possessions will make you happy
Like Dalai Lama said at a conference in India, “Inner happiness is something you have to find on your own, inside your heart. Otherwise, you can just end up being a millionaire, but sad and lonely.”
Given our lives and the effect of technology on them, there is rarely time left for one’s own thoughts at the end of the day. Try and use whatever little time you have left after your busy schedule to reflect and plain introspect. That’s how you eventually learn how to be at peace with yourself.
Material possessions sure make life easier and more comfortable but they don’t lead the path to true happiness.
7. Expecting that you will fail
But you know what? You actually might make it, have you thought of that?
And if you try your utmost best and still fail, you will always have the consolation that you DID try; that you did not fail for the lack of effort. There is peace in that.
Believing that you will succeed makes it more likely for you to do so.