When I heard about the topic for this week, “The folly of expectations” I was a little disappointed. Not because I expected a different topic but because I personally never consider having expectations to be a folly. They are natural for a human as Payal so wonderfully put it in her article.
I don’t think a person can stop harbouring expectations. As human beings our hearts and minds is always on a lookout for something nice to happen for us. We are always anticipating with a belief that something we desire will be fulfilled. But to be on a safer side and counter the despair of disappointment we have to learn to manage our expectations and keep them realistic.
Whom do we expect the most from?
In our short lives it’s our parents and friends from whom we expect the most. Its inevitable isn’t it. People whom we care about and who care about us are the ones whom we want to understand us, provide us with whatever we are searching for. And whenever we depend on another person for something there is a probability of being let down and left disappointed.
In terms of physics, Probability of heart-break/disappointment is directly proportional to the degree of expectations. The more we expect the more are the chances of being let down.
Our parents love us the most, but even then, it becomes difficult at times for them to be all fulfilling all understanding. We have to try to understand them , their troubles, and make sacrifices and even a compromise. Their intentions are always noble for their children and that should always be remembered, respected and cherished.
With friends the expectations keep varying. The chances of heart-break are more because we take our friends for granted. So many things are just assumed and left unsaid. There are situations where a friend take undue advantage of the other all in good faith. If the air is not cleared the relationship may get strained even to the point of no return. We have to stay honest and express our concerns and not let things get complicated.
There is another person from whom we expect a lot and that is ourselves. I have had many moments where I have not been able to finish an article due to the fear it will not be good enough. This self-critic within needs to be kept in check and we have to stop taking ourselves too seriously.
Expectations like hope helps us to move ahead but of course with its caveat. It can’t be done without. And if things don’t go as we expected we should pick up the pieces and carry on learning from that experience.
As the great poet and philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson says, “The greatest glory lies not in never falling but in rising every time we fall.”