We all have expectations: of ourselves, of others, of how events will turn out and even of how we will feel. We expect that our holiday will be straight off the pages of Martha Stewart, or we dread a meeting because we assume it will be uncomfortable. An expectation is sometimes a bias.
The feeling of expectation can range from presumption to eagerness. But does having a preset expectation always serve our best interest?
When something or someone fails to meet our expectation, we become disappointed, perhaps even disillusioned. Even when things are less terrible than we imagined we shrug and say, “Well, at least I was prepared for the worst, even if it didn’t happen.”
But what are we really doing when we presume to know what someone is thinking, how they will act or react, or even the way an occasion will turn out? By having a certain expectation we are in fact influencing both behavior and outcome.
What if instead we could clear our minds of presumptions and be just open to whatever happens: accept a holiday that is less than picture perfect, or attend a meeting with pure impartiality?
What if…it’s an interesting supposition. Today I invite you to recognize and acknowledge your expectations – your preset biases – and then, even if just for that one event, that one five minute meeting, let it go.
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