Supposedly, the less we expect, the less disappointed we will be. But without expectation, what standard would I hold for my home, my kids, . . . myself? Obviously I have relatively high standards, and I think the same is true for most in our society.
But why are so many depressed or anxious? What isn’t working?
I think part of it is the thinking that follows the line of “if I’m doing my part, everything should be okay . . . especially for me.” Or maybe the expectation that if I can’t do something directly to fix xyz, then someone else will fix it.
Maybe there is expectation that life shouldn’t be too hard, that one shouldn’t have to sacrifice too much.
Maybe if it’s someone else’s problem, it’s none of my business.
I don’t know how I would go about my life if these were my expectations. I think I work from these basic principles and the resulting expectations.
- Living includes suffering –> Life is going to be hard.
- Love & compassion alleviate suffering –> To make a difference, be compassionate.
- We ALL have a choice –> Not everyone will make the same choices, nor will the choices always be good.
- I am human –> I will be imperfect, try as I might to prove otherwise.
- There is God –> There is Light, even and especially in the heart of darkness.
These are bigger expectations, of course, that things like, “My kids are respectful –> They pick up their toys and will keep the bathroom clean.” But if I can keep my baseline clear and even, then I can keep (or at least have a chance at keeping) perspective.
When it comes to expectations, perspective can make all the difference.