Wednesday, January 22, 2014


…so says Buddha.

I came upon this quote about 20 years ago and, although I didn’t agree with it, it really made me think. How could I give up expectations? Weren’t they the spur that I needed to goad me on to bigger and better things? How could I just sit back and let life float on by?

It wasn’t until a dear friend explained it to me in a different light that I began to understand that quote. She made it very simple. “Just imagine,” she said “that you set a goal for yourself and you have every reason to expect that you will get there. Then you do get there and you sit back … pleased with yourself for fulfilling your expectation. The only problem with that,” she went on “is that you’ll never know how far you could have gone if you hadn’t been limited by your expectations.”

Wow. What a concept. I came to realize that I’d been cheating myself. By taking the expectations out of my daily life I’ve received much more than I would have settled for on my own.

I also came to realize that expectations ruled my everyday life. Whenever I planned something I would run it over in my mind and would expect it to come out according to my plan. Of course it never did and I would be constantly disappointed. I came to realize that people are not here to meet my expectations.

So my new outlook on life (tried and tested over the past 20+ years) is simplicity personified. I make plans, but I don’t predict the outcome. I accept people, places and things as they are and I realize that the only person I can change is ME !



Blogger Arkansas Patti said...

Hum, that is an interesting way to look at things.

4:41 AM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

Good thoughts from an interesting quote. I'm not sure that's what the quote meant, but if the result works, it's all good.

5:27 AM  
Blogger possum said...

Bravo! Great post!
I often use expectations as a topic for discussion...
I long ago learned that the expectations we have for other people almost always bring disappointment and often resentment when things did not fulfill our expectations.
Setting goals get us off our butts but I always make sure I have more goals than I will be able to finish to keep me going.
Good for you, Ginnie!

5:30 AM  
Blogger KGMom said...

Words of wisdom, indeed, Ginnie.

4:10 PM  
Blogger Beatrice P. Boyd said...

I discovered awhile ago that people don't quite live up to my expectations, and so i have decided not to expect much and then there's no disappointment.

5:56 PM  
Blogger Grace-WorkinProgress said...

I discovered lately that I have been all wrong. I thought is was important to have standards or expectations or others and myself. I realize now that this was taking up so much of my time. It only made me crazy when things didn't go the way I thought they should. I live and let live on my best days.

Great Post.

8:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes we can limit ourselves with expectations, however, we can also get into trouble if we go to far…hence the Peter Principle. I reckon we each do the best we can at the time we do it.

10:05 AM  
Blogger Regenia said...

I love your "simplicity personified". What a wonderful guideine!

5:35 AM  
Blogger Syd said...

Such a good post. I have lowered my expectations until I get what I want--and then I am not disappointed.

4:46 AM  

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