[ 3 steps to better expectation management ]

Just to start off this long-overdue post with the right mindset, I’d like you to set your expectation bar low enough for a 3-year-old to step over. We have been through this relationship stage before: where I confess my blogger’s block and you (on my own assumption) forgive me; where we introspect ourselves, accept each other’s flaw, and then move on. There is no denying that the vicious cycle of failing to fulfill another party’s expectations will repeat itself. Endlessly feeling apologetic does more harm than good on my part and hence the birth of this post to rectify what needs be.

Step 1: Three-m off your past experiences of the present

As the saying goes:
Old people live in the past;
Young people live in the future;
Wise people live in the present;
shouldn’t everyone of us strive to be wise?

I know it’s a hell of a time trying to detach ourselves from the past. I always liked to remember and associate good and bad experiences I had with my current situation. That sense of familiarity makes me feel secure and confident of what is to come. Just as how I am used to the way strangers often smile back at me on my way to my routine, I expect my initiative to host a reunion dinner with old friends to have unwelcoming responses.

How, then?


Step 2: Ex-three-m worry of the future is unnecessary

I know I’m being a hypocrite when it comes to erm.. let’s say forward-thinking, to put it subtly. I worry about the number of hours left to lunchtime when I have my breakfast in the late morning, which will subsequently affect my afternoon snack and dinner timing. I worry about the kind of stares I will get on the subway when I accidentally mismatch my outfit and how it looks on my body. I worry about not being able to entertain the people I have interactions with. I worry about worrying itself. I wish I were a warrior, and not a worrier.

Come to think of it, I sound more like a person with OCD or perhaps a mere control freak.

How, then?


Step 3: Three-t and be kind to yourself

I’d say many of us like to be nasty and harsh to ourselves when something doesn’t get done properly as expected. I often end up bombarding myself with questions and getting so disappointed when things turn out differently from how I want them to. How selfish of me, right! I like to think I control the universe sometimes, just to make matters worse. Ha!

How, then?

Sorry to disappoint, I’m no Agony Aunt that you can subscribe to every month. I honestly don’t know the answer to those questions. Hopefully your expectation bar is still as low as I deemed you to set in the first place, lest you trip and fall.

My only suggestion is to stop ignoring the root cause — overthinking; yes, that’s you and me – and acknowledge the facts that:

1. We DO establish the foundation of our future experiences on the past ones

2. We DO have our worries about the future

3. We DO get disappointed at times

I am not going to deny that I always overthink. I am going to live with that but not let these things bring me down. Expecting certain things to happen is simply to ascertain that we humans do still believe in even the slightest glimmer of hope?

On a side note, Happy 3rd Anniversary to About Giving and Re-three-ving! ;)


Image sources: Tumblr

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