"We love to expect, and when expectation is either disappointed or gratified, we want to be again expecting." - Samuel Johnson
Look - This is not an advice piece about managing or losing your expectations but it is my humble attempt to understand this whole "expectation" madness that all of us go thru every single day.
It is very timely to talk about expectation in a time when the #twtupIM committee is organizing this special event for friends of inspire.fm and motivationMY. There are so many questions in my head right now but this is the ultimate one: How many people will come? 10? 20? 30?
Sometimes we have set a target and that is our "expectation". In other words, that's the desired outcome that we want to happen.
The funny thing is that if we can't meet our expectation, we'll get upset. And then we flip thru self-help books or some quote on Twitter and they'll say "Lose the expectation. Life is full of surprises!" (we've all come across that right?).
They're right in some ways, but let me tell you why they're kinda wrong too.
See... such wisdom is really nice to read and digest for a few minutes. But let's admit it... how can we lose the expectation if we have KPIs to reach in our career. How can we lose the expectation when we have an event to organize (again, using the #twtupIM example!). How can we lose the expectation when we're expecting something in return (in business, career, relationship, etc)
I was (and sometimes, still am) having this problem juggling between having this grand expectation but at the same time, having people tell me that "life should be full of surprises... lose the expectation".
However, one event changed my viewpoint... it's like my "Aha! Moment".
I was going thru a series of mock-run and when it was my turn to read the news, I wanted everything to be so perfect (that's my expectation). I didn't want to fumble and I wanted it to be flawless. That expectation was running thru my head all the time and guess what? I fumbled... continued to fumble... and it was a disaster.
I was focusing on the destination that I've forgotten about the journey. I've forgotten to "feel" the script. I've forgotten to understand the stories I'm supposed to read. Although the expectation is to do well, I must also remember to take it a step at a time.
It's not so much about losing the expectation... but the word that I'll use is managing. We can't totally lose the expectation because we do expect certain outcome when we do things (especially positive ones) but we need to manage our mindset.
Let's use the #twtupIM event example again. Yes, I do have certain expectation of the attendees because I am answerable to my co-organizer and also venue. But instead of just focusing on that, I should focus on the journey as well.
I'm doing my best and all that I can to attract a big crowd to attend #twtupIM. It could work both ways at the end of the day. 1) It could be a huge crowd (YAY!!) or 2) It'll be a smaller crowd, but I'm fine with it too because I know we've done our best.
Having expectations is normal. We anticipate the outcome of our decisions and actions. If it goes our way, great!
But what if it doesn't? Well, that's the exact reason why we have to MANAGE our expectations well. Do remember to do your best in anything and perhaps the outcome will be even greater than our expectations? I know a thing or two about that too!
How do you manage your expectations?
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by Syafique, founder of motivationMY
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