Expectations – we all have them pertaining to every aspect of our lives, be it as simple as getting your food with the ingredients listed in the menu, or more complicated, like your friends knowing you enough to ask when there’s something wrong and accepting you, warts and all. They flourish more and more, sometimes taking on fairytale proportions, that guide our behavior and, most importantly, our relationships with the people surrounding us.
They translate into the simple (for us, of course) rules we design in our heads. Yet, when it comes down to letting others know of them, they magically become camouflaged, and we clam up under the pressure of our own consciousness.
‘are they going to get mad?’
‘what if they don’t like what I have to say?’
‘I think they already know me enough to do that’ and so on…
Expectations are tricky. Sometimes we don’t want to tell the person in front of us about what we expect, because maybe it seems personal, a little crazy, silly… but we still expect others to act in the way we picture in our minds.
And, of course, with lack of communication comes disappointment – the moment the person in front doesn’t meet said outlines we’ve imagined for that situation. So, we recoil back into our own heads to asses the outcome and respond accordingly, all this taking place sometimes in just a few second, other times in years.
Of course, the more you invest emotionally in your expectations and build empires in your mind, the bigger the disappointment when they don’t fit in with reality.
Reactions to disappointment vary from depression to anger, to giving up, sadness, doubt, surprise and others, but there’s always a feeling weighing down on you – hurt! This is when you should know that you’ve become so attached to your expectation and hoped – wished – it to be true, that you never considered the opposite result.