Expectations lead to disappointment.
Ever heard that before? Did you make you vomit a little when you heard it?
Stop and think about that. Answer in your head, keep it to yourself, what the implications of that statement are. Think about it....
It's ridiculous isn't it?
Wait, Will. Look at how beautiful the world would be if you saw things that way. I'd be surprised by the sunrise every morning, I'd be overjoyed that my roommates didn't steal everything from my apartment overnight and are still nicely tucked away in their beds, fast asleep dreaming sweet dreams with no expectations of waking up. Heck, I don't expect the banks to hold my money. I don't expect people to keep their word when they make a promise. I don't expect a policeman to randomly open fire at me as I drive by.
It's a horrible world, isn't it? Sure. Expect the worst and you won't be hurt. That's what that means. Pain is the motivator, or the averting factor.
Going back to the sunrise. I'd flatly disagree. A sunrise is more beautiful because I know it will come everyday. My expectations make it that much better. And it's that easy.
Aside from my timid counter-arguments, I’ve come to learn truth speaks for itself and often doesn’t need mine or anyone’s defense. Common sense runs nicely at its side.
When a person says something something as horrible and nasty (I'll call it that because that's what it is) as expectations only lead to disappointment, they are rearranging the way they view everything that happens in their life based on the pain of disappointment. Pain is not the same as evil. Pain is not the worst thing that could happen to a person. Stop being such a hedonist. Get over it.
Expectations can be dangerous, though not in people’s philosophy of life, but in the way they go about their friendships and relationships. I’ve heard several people in the training for my summer job say they get angry when people don’t do things they expect them to do. My only question is, “Did you tell them you expected that? Did they agree to it?”
It’s not hard. If you go to all the trouble of being offended to the point of holding a nasty grudge for months and months until the friendship is only a passing silence, or superficial niceties with nothing underneath, then I think a person is entitled to know what expectations you placed on them, and there should be some agreement.
“He should know I’m angry with him. He knows what he did.” Guess what? He probably doesn’t know. His first job in this world is not to read your mind. It isn’t, nor should it be.
What’s the key phrase used to solve this bad habit in relationships: realistic expectations. I like the sound of that. Realistic expectations have a mutual tone to them that levels the playing field. A person with realistic expectations of others has a baseline view of politeness and etiquette. Expecting apologies when your feelings are hurt or you are angry is not a realistic expectation. To expect people’s complete attention in catering to your needs without you telling them is an unrealistic expectation. I completely agree that it is ideal, and it would be nice, but it’s unrealistic.
People carry with them a million tasks, thoughts, and feelings in a single stroll to their car. Where does a person get off saying they should know what other people are thinking and feeling? “Should” is a powerful word, and becomes lethal when misused. Let’s not get luxury and duty mixed up.
Is anyone listening?