How Expectations Can Bring Heartbreak

Posted on Posted in Heal, Love
Share This Article

This morning after having sessions with two of my beloved coaching clients, I saw a VERY clear message.  It seems like many of you might be going through this same thing… right now.

Today was a  VERY strong reminder that releasing expectations of others allows us to be SO much happier.  

I will go into more depth on how this works in a minute so if you’re intrigued… just stick with me.  

We all have expectations built into our lives;
the things we expect of ourselves,
the things that we expect of others &
the things that others expect of us.  

Our choices and feelings are affected by the expectations that others place on us.  Our relationships are affected by the judgments that we place on others due to the expectations that we’ve placed on them also.

Wheeeeewww….was that heavy?!  For some it might have been.  
Please take a moment to read that once more;  it’s VERY important.  

Because if that feels too hard for you, you may not be ready for this much clarity or depth, and that’s OK.  

I want to take a moment to say that there is no judgement here;  only observation and a chance for more clarity.  

My hope is that after reading this you’ll feel more aware of the expectations in your life, be able to decide what you want to keep, and what you want to release.

So, if you’re ready, let’s play with this idea of “expectations”.   Let’s first start with what “expectation” actually means. 

The Definition of Expectation:

A strong belief that something will happen or be the case in the future, or a belief that someone will or should achieve something.
NOTE:  I would like to also add to that definition : a belief that someone will or should do something for us or for someone else.

What benefits are there of having expectations?

Do you think that by having expectations of yourself it will allow you to reach higher, work harder, succeed more or be happier?

Do you think that by having expectations of others, you’ll able to guide others to reach higher, work harder, succeed more or be happier?

Maybe by doing what others expect of you allows you to gaining approval, acceptance, belonging or have personal meaning?  Maybe the expectations that you have of others is the easiest way to define the boundaries in which you need others to treat you and how you’ve emotionally survived up to this point.

Have you ever lived a day without expectation?  

Have you ever thought about it?  Free from guilt.  Free from disappointment.  Free from frustration of other people’s actions and definitions.

What do you think that would feel like?  How differently do you think people would react to you?  How differently would you act towards others?  How stronger would your relationships be if everything someone did for you was a pleasant surprise?

Look at the expectations that you may have on yourself.
What achievements do you expect from yourself and in what time frame?  What expectations do you have on your body?  How you allow yourself to feel or not to feel.  To cry or to not cry.  To honor or to not honor yourself.  Ask yourself:  Are these expectations fair? Are they currently serving my life?  Do they cause deep fulfillment or are they causing disappointment?

Look at the expectations that you have of your friends, acquaintances, and your loved ones.  Are they fair?   Are they currently serving the relationships that you have with that person?  Do they cause peace or do they cause resentment and frustration?

Look at the choices you make because of the expectations that others place on you.  Do they make you feel supported, more encouraged and fulfilled?  Or do they leave you drained and resistant to that person holding the expectation over you?

Do they cause you to question your own path and your own personal value?  Do those expectations leave you feeling drained and judged when you can’t live up to them.  Do you feel like a failure or like your not good enough?

By answering the questions above for yourself, you’ll undoubtedly see the benefit of releasing the expectations that you have on yourself and on others.  The expectations that are no longer serving you or your relationships.  

You’ll see the benefit of releasing the desire to please others and hopefully start honoring yourself more in the process.   

This is a BIG topic.  I know!  I dare say that expectations affect everyone in some way.

These questions are only the beginning and it can be a very emotional yet HEALING road to walk down.

I’ve held many of my clients through this.  It takes time, some tears, a lot of releasing and the ability for my clients to stay in a place of non-judgement, have compassion, and unconditional love for oneself.

If you would like support while moving through releasing the expectations in your own life, I would LOVE to be that support system for you.  I would LOVE to hold that sacred space for you to heal and feel empowered again or maybe even for the first time.

If that interests you, you can start by seeing if I’m a good fit for you during a
FREE 20min. Consult with me.

One Final Question…..

What is one expectation that you would like to release today and why?  Please share in the comment section below.

12 thoughts on “How Expectations Can Bring Heartbreak

  1. I think expectations just set us up for failure and disappointment, most of the time. Especially if they are set too high. It sounds like such a demanding word, to me. Gives you something to think about, that’s for sure. Great post! 🙂

    1. I agree that the word expectation is heavy and can feel demanding, and unwavering. The other problem is that it doesn’t seem to ever be satisfied; which can be defeating.

      Here’s an example: Say you got everything done that you meant to do. Say you did it in record time. Do you usually stop, rest, relax, and do something fulfilling for yourself after you’ve accomplished these things? (or) Do you more often say “hmm….I have more time, maybe I could get these other things done too?” Then you put new expectations and deadlines on yourself, and there lies the opportunity for disappointment, overwhelm, frustration, and the extra stress that many of us get pulled into on a daily or weekly basis.

      A little more to think about. 🙂 Thank you Tammy for commenting! Wishing you a BEAUTIFUL day!

  2. Hi Amanda,

    You’ve given me something to mull over. As a driven goal setter, a leader, and a service provider, my life is wallpapered with expectations. I appreciate that you included a note about aspirations in your post — where would accountability fit in? I equate expectations with accountability. I’d love to have your opinion.

    Thanks for this great post.

    1. Hi Susan,

      I love this question about accountability! I too am an avid driven goal setter, a leader, and a service provider. But, as I have gone away from expecting a certain outcome on my to-do list each day, or a certain situation to occur, or a reaction of another, a project to unfold exactly how I expected, a program to be created the way I first thought it should be created, or that I would be supported in a certain way by certain people in my life… I have been blessed.

      Each day I have found more acceptance, more achievement, more creativity, more grace for myself and others, the deepest professional partnerships and personal relationships that I could have NEVER imagined, and many synchronistic opportunities that I would have NEVER been able to plan for. These opportunities within themselves have pushed me closer and closer to what gives me passion in my business and life.

      Believe me… this has not been an easy transition as I use to equate achieving my own expectations and the expectations that others had on me, with being accepted and truly successful in life.

      When we get in the trap of EXPECTING things out of ourselves, we then accept other people’s expectations. This can be heart breaking and disappointing when we don’t live up to them. When we expect that an outcome will happen the way we think, or others think we limit the amazing opportunities and lessons that may be meant to come in a different form.

      Personally I’ve seen in my own life and with clients that when we as individuals know what we are meant to be doing in this world, when we can see the truth of who we really are, when all of the ego and gunk is cleared, and when we know what our own core values are; accountability being one of those; it is easier to strive and to aspire to achieve those levels without the guilt of expectation.

      We are able to be more authentic and empowered in all that we do. We are more willing to hold ourselves accountable in a loving, creative, and accepting way and achieve great heights. It’s a much more beautiful way to create, achieve, and live the life and create the business that you’ll LOVE!

      Loved getting deeper with you today Susan! Have a wonderful day!

  3. LOVE this blog post – expectations – both those others place on us and those we place on ourselves can be damaging. Thank you for the clarity on it.

  4. I do a lot of work around courageous conversations, helping people disentangle them from the outcomes they want. Once they can put aside the expectations like “I don’t want you to be angry” their chances of achieving their outcomes dramatically increase.

    1. It’s beautiful to meet a like-minded person helping others as well. 😉 It’s a powerful thing that your teaching others. Best wishes for continued success Tilla! I’m happy to have met you. If you’d like to stay connected or reciprocate support, please check me out on FB @ https://www.facebook.com/Claim.it.Live.it. Every week I provide tid bits of inspiration, tools, exercises and tips for personal growth.

  5. Your post really struck a chord with me. I spent a good portion of my life trying to live up to others expections. And despite the lessons I should have learned from that, punishing others when they failed to meet my expections of them. I’ve grown since then, fortunately but sometimes find myself backsliding. Oh well! Onwards and upwards!

    1. In your words I hear: self-acceptance, personal grace, and more awareness. All ingredients for AMAZING personal growth … LOVE it! Thank you for commenting Melodieann.

  6. Great read! This really made me think of expectations very differently. I do think expectations can be a big problem, especially when you have expectations about what others will do or act. On the other hand, I think expectations for yourself can easily be similar to aspirations and are important. On the third hand 🙂 I always believed that the fact that my parents had certain expectations for me worked as a positive guide for how I behaved and achieved. It wasn’t always perfect, but it felt good that they they thought I coudl reach certain heights. I’m sure there’s more to it… lots to noodle on, thanks!

    1. Making one think about things in a different way, bring a light too, and challenge current thoughts…. a beautiful exercise in personal growth; thank you for taking it on. 🙂 I loved your comments Kelli! what I’m hearing is that your parent’s had expectations of you that were constructive and loving yet possibly communicated them to you in a way that seemed more loving, accepting, open, and aspiring. If so this sounds like a wonderful support system. 🙂 Thanks for commenting Kelli! Have a BEAUTIFUL day and enjoy noodling on.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *