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Integration Exercise #16

Are your expectations
getting in the way of your joy?

 Expectations have a way of disappointing the heck out of my life. I read somewhere, “expectations of others are like planned disappointments” (author unknown).

I couldn’t agree more.

I don’t want to cause confusion here. There are a certain type of expectations that are valuable. AND . . . there are the other type that can be the thief of joy. 

EXPECTATIONS: The belief you hold about the outcome of events. 

Let’s Integrate . . .

“I suffer because my interactions with others do not meet the expectations I did not know I had. “

Here are a few examples of healthy expectations:

1. When someone gives you their word about what they are going to do, EXPECTING them to keep their word. Equally important, when you give your word to hold the self expectation to honor it. 

2. How you intend your relationships to be (not to be mistaken by how you expect the people you are in relationships to be). This one is particularly tricky because ultimately, who you choose ideally would fit into how you expect your relationships to be. However, and most important thing for you to remember, if you chose them anyway, even when they don’t fit into your ideal relationship categories, it becomes your responsibility to accept them as they are! Expecting them to become who you wanted is an unfair position to take and a surefire way to disappointment,  

3. What you will achieve. Holding yourself to a standard that elevates and uplifts you. A great expectation to have.  

Here are a few examples of unhealthy expectations:

1. Life should be fair.

2. Opportunities will come to me – waiting for some hope, wish, or pray to come your way; feeling disappointed when it doesn’t

3. Everyone should like me – Surely a disappointment waiting to happen. This is impossible. Don’t waste your time. 

4. People should agree with me.

5. I am going to fail.

6. THINGS will make me happy.

7. I can change him/her/them.

8. People know what I am trying to say.


Exercise: Part 1

It is important to be aware of your expectations in order to manage them.  

1. Write down all of the expectations you have of yourself.

2. Write down all of the expectations you have of others.

3. Write down the prices you pay for expectations you have of yourself.

4. Write down the prices others pay for the expectations you have of them.

Exercise: Part 2
Now take some time to reflect on what your life would be like when you keep your expectations healthy and leave the unhealthy ones out?


Bonus Exercise: Part 3

Have a conversation with someone you have held your expectations to. Take ownership of your expectations and create a promise or agreement with them about what they can count on you for moving forward.  **Post about it in the discussion space.

As always, consider sharing with the group what has opened up as you complete this exercise.