“Expectations”…Realistic or Unrealistic ?…Good or Bad?

“Expectation” is a word that can fill you with joy

and also fill you with dread.

The expectation that you put on yourself can be spine tingling or nerve numbing.

The expectations that others place upon you can have the same effect however tend to weigh much more heavily because…..they aren’t YOUR expectations.

…which would you rather have?

Personal expectations…the ones that come from us… are largely “drivers”. They get us going, reaching out, pushing us along. They come from within and contain a ‘knowing’ that we can do more.

We set goals, have aspirations, dreams and expect that good things will come of our efforts.

‘External expectations’ come from a variety of sources. Your coach, your mentor, family, team members, friends and of course the big daddy (or momma) of them all…..the expectations of your nation (the Olympics are a current great example of this).

Now largely, these external expectations are borne from your own ‘performance’ in Life. People can see that you are doing great & want (expect)  that to continue OR you are not doing so great & want (expect) you to improve. This can be said of both sport and Life in general.

It’s something that ‘comes with the territory’ however really nothing that we can control to any great extent because they aren’t your expectations.

Personal expectation is the one that we have greater control over.

We can either expect very little or a great deal. We can be realistic about this by viewing our past & present ‘performance’ & making valued judgements about what we expect by way of improvement. We can also be “realistic” and do absolutely nothing…commonly called ‘low expectation’.

We can also follow the same line of thought and be completely unrealistic. We can expect way beyond our capabilities based on comparison with others. If we are not comparing within reason, then the pressure to reach the unrealistic will be unbearable.

Which will set you up for Failure.

So the way I see expectation, is simply to expect to do your best. Expect to dream your best dream, kick your best goal and live your best Life.

No more, no less.

And they have to be your dreams, your goals and….. you must be living your Life.

Do you have expectations that are unrealistic place upon you? or are your own expectations unrealistic? Please share your expectations in the comments below.

be good to yourselves


# I help men & women aged 40 & over, make their goals, dreams & longer term Visions for their Life, come true. Contact me Today for your FREE introductory coaching session.

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15 thoughts on ““Expectations”…Realistic or Unrealistic ?…Good or Bad?

  1. I try not to put much stock in others expectations of me. After all, their knowledge of me and what I am trying to accomplish is usually limited. Trying to get those balance expectations from myself can be tricky at times and sometimes require contemplation.

  2. Some great truths about expectations here! I have to keep a regular check on my expectations of myself and others because I know they stem from being a control freak! If I’m honest many of the disappointments I have in life come from my unrealistic expectations. I’ve learnt to be a lot more flexible but still loads of room for improvement!

  3. “And they have to be your dreams, your goals and….. you must be living your Life.” So true David, sometimes what other people expect of us comes from their desires, not ours. Follow your heart is the definitely the way to go.

  4. Wonderful perception on expectations. While we can control our own, being realistic is the key. Thank you David. Very nice read. I’ve added this post to mine, today.

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