Expectations and Disappointments
“Blessed is he who expects nothing, for he shall never be disappointed.” Alexander Pope
If you are diagnosed with myasthenia gravis, one of the many autoimmune diseases, you may feel devastated when the doctor tells you that there is no cure. When the doctor prescribes some medications for you to treat your disease symptoms, you expect they will be effective; when they don’t work, you then become disappointed.
Given that nearly all of us go through life expecting certain things to happen, we become greatly disappointed when things do not turn out the way we think they should. As a matter of fact, in life, things seldom go our ways, and life is never what it should be. Our disappointments can easily turn into anger, anxiety, despair, regret, and many other negative emotions that adversely affect who we are and how we process our thoughts.
To offset or diminish the devastating emotional consequences as a result of not meeting our expectations, many of us may resort to mentally expecting the worst, instead of the best, while hoping against hope that we may still be pleasantly surprised; deliberately lowering our life expectations to proportionately reduce the extent of our disappointments; and consciously expecting no expectation whatsoever with our complete detachment.
Processing expectations is more complex than we may think. The mental exertion to “expect the unexpected”, to “go with the flow”, and to “live in the present without any future expectation” is easier said than done, and may be even difficult or impossible for most of us.
So, how do we live our lives in these circumstances? How should we process our life expectations?
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