The definition of an expectation is (n): a strong belief that something will happen or will be the case in the future.
Synonyms include: assumption, hope, anticipation, and prediction.
Let’s check in here; where do my expectations lie in comparison to reality? At what point do my expectations give birth to my future and at what point do they claw me back into delusion?
And then the next layer; which aspects of my expectations for myself and my own life lie in the judgement of others?
We are all the product of our surroundings. A lot of the expectations we place upon ourselves are borrowed or learned from our environment and/or the paths our loved ones anticipate or think is best for us.
Stripping that all away and getting at my core means disregarding the energy and the opinions of those around me. When you get to that place – void of external influence with a tight personal aura – what truly lies there?
For me, I place strict and sometimes outlandish expectations on myself. I have been described as a hustler and a go-getter. I have wild dreams for my future but I also place strategic systems in place for me to step by step get there. I can be delusional about small picture timelines (I think I can do everything quickly) but I understand and am rooted in big picture timelines. I know my dream won’t be fully satisfied for another few years and that when I get there, I’ll have another large dream in place to keep chasing.
My expectation is that I never stop working and growing – and I know this to be true.
Perhaps my expectation of owning a house in five years is a definite gamble. It could happen, it could not.
My expectations of reaching a certain amount of success and wealth by a certain age is both constructed from my outside environment and myself equally.
I have gone against the grain of societal expectations: I transferred and attended four different colleges. Then I dropped out and never graduated. I got tattoos in a community that abhors them. I never chased after the real job and instead have sat uncomfortably/comfortably in entrepreneurship and the gritty start-up culture. I’ve been wearing black since I came out of the womb. Aesthetically, I beat to my own drum growing up, never preferring the style of my peers.
That list can go on. There is a certain place in my heart I hold dearly and it’s called “against the grain.” I somehow feed off of it.
And I somehow let it destroy me.
While I usually don’t let societal expectations chain me in, I replace those ideals with my own.
Why am I not more successful yet?
Why is my savings account not where I want it to be?
Did I work enough today to make tomorrow count?
Have I taken enough small steps this week to be closer towards my strategic future?
Why did I work seven hours instead of eleven?
And it goes on and on..
Here’s the thing about expectations: they let you down and can make you feel as if you are not enough if not otherwise managed.
I am attempting to let go of the harsh expectations I place upon myself and focus more on my to-do list. Head down, crossing things off whenever I can. Focus on the big goal, not the failures of today. Only hold the expectation that you are wonderful, hard working, and getting shit done.
Trust yourself that you can get there and that you are getting there – sans expectations.
For today, my intention is this; I have trust that I can accomplish what I want and need to accomplish and make sure those tasks are in line with my gut and authentic self. Weed out the expectations that fill me with anticipating poison. Working means one thing: fulfilling your big picture dream.
That is the only expectation I need.
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