Often times we have expectations about others, the world, and ourselves. Expectations for ourselves can help us succeed and accomplish the objectives we set in life. Unfortunately, expectations can also bring much disappointment when we believe that others share our expectations or will share them in the future, but
they do not or will not. This belief can bring feelings of disappointment, hurt, frustration, stress, and even anger towards our loved ones. I have learn to believe that the more expectations we have of others, the greater the chances are that they will let us down. This statement can sound confusing and even strange for some, because it’s a fairly common practice to have expectations of others, especially our loved ones.
I would like to clarify that there is a difference between asking for what we want and expecting others to give us what we want because they “should” give it to us. There is also a difference between what is a priority for us and what is a priority for others. Using words like should, should not, have to, and ought to can communicate expectations. In an effort to avoid further disappointment, hurt, stress, frustration, and anger, I suggest lowering some expectations, especially the ones that keep disappointing us time after time. Of course, easier said than done.
Many people come to therapy in an effort to let go of their expectations and learn to identify the beliefs where these expectations are rooted. Through the work in therapy, individuals and couples can learn new ways to communicate their needs and desires from their loved ones without the expectation that causes feelings of hurt and anger. If people, the world, and even yourself keeps letting you down, maybe it’s time that you consider being more flexible, talking to a professional may help. You can free yourself from constant disappointed, hurt, frustration, and anger towards your love ones who disregard or refuse to do what you expect.