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Expectations Are Like Hand Grenades

"Every expectation is a premeditated resentment" ~ Unknown

Would you like to know how to stop being disappointed? Stop expecting.

Sam Hazo once said, “Expect nothing and anything seems like everything. Expect anything and everything seems like nothing.” If you expect a certain positive outcome and another positive outcome results, you won’t perceive it as positive because it wasn’t the one you expected. If you expect the worst in life- you will most certainly be rewarded with the worst. And you will still be disappointed because once again, “life sucks.” Expectations are limitations. They actually stop you from receiving the best.

In contrast, if you have a vision, which has flexibility around its fulfillment, your stress level is diminished significantly. You are focused on the vision and allow the “how” to show up as you go about being fully present for life. Having expectations of how things should be, ought to be, have to be, need to be, robs us of the possibility of what could be.

They are also demands. Every expectation is a demand on someone. Think for a moment, how do you feel when someone places an expectation on you (spoken or unspoken)? Do you feel frustrated, oppressed? Do you sometimes just refuse? Do you feel that no matter how much you do, it is never enough?

Now, turn this around. Look at the demands and expectations you place upon yourself, others, situations and even the world. Our expectations come from feelings of inadequacy and neediness. We try to get our needs met by controlling others and outward situations. When that someone or something does not live up to our expectation we naturally feel resentful. The level of the expectation determines the level of our stress, and therefore the level of resentment and disappointment. The higher the expectation, the higher the demand, the harder we work, the more stress is generated. And when we get to the end — we feel empty.

Expectations are our internal picture (our fantasy)of what will make us happy. We really don’t know what will make us happy. What made us happy yesterday may not make us happy today. The more we expect, the less we are open to receive what is possible. Perhaps this is where faith comes in. We must release our expectations and shift to a place of expectancy. Expectancy being that state where we believe the best is coming even without knowing what that looks like. And gratefulness for the present, even though it may not look like the image we planned. What if now is the absolute best place to be? The best place to learn, to grow, and to receive what is necessary to allow the creation of what is to come.

You can relax now and be open to possibility. Or you can continue to play with dynamite.

Expectations are like hand grenades, you throw them out never knowing where they will land, when they will go off, or whom they will hurt. It’s a dangerous game.

Copyright,Judy Irving,2001. All rights reserved.

SIMPLIFY YOUR LIFE - "Harbor no thought that will burn." - ~ Elaine St. James

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