Having a goal to work towards is good. Too many times, what I find is that when we achieve a goal, it rarely looks exactly how we envisioned it when we started.
Expectations are different than goals. They tend to prematurely describe exactly how things will look when you achieve something. Or in a relationship, how exactly others are to respond to you or your requests and interactions. Our ego fills in the picture we want to see before it’s time to take the picture.
Our world becomes much smaller when our expectations are all we seek. We easily miss things that are relevant and can be helpful. We are never totally present in what we are doing because we spend most of our time looking for what we expect to see or hear.
There is an ebb and flow to life and its events that need us to be flexible enough to adjust while working towards a goal. Expectations severely limit our ability to adjust because we miss this ebb and flow. When we have expectations, its as if we are proclaiming what must occur rather than working while adjusting to get to where we want to go.
Nothing happens in isolation. Nothing.
Even to write this blog, I must choose to not do something else at this same time. I may get interrupted or not able to write when I want so I have to adjust. To lose weight, I will be challenged when going out with friends to dinner instead of staying home and eating only one boiled egg. In both of these cases, if I expected something different to happen I most likely would have been less effective in both what I wanted to get done and in what the interruption presented me with.
We can only control ourselves. Once you believe this, there is little place for expectations of others and situations. Never give up on setting goals and working to achieve something that does not exist today. Just understand that instead of expecting things to happen, your ability to sense the ebb and flows in your life that situations and others present to you unexpectedly and being able to adjust accordingly is the key to becoming more effective.