I have a tendency to link hope and expectation. I hope something and right along with it comes a set of expectations without even thinking about it. Having a personality that tends towards extremes, it sends me on a bungee spring of bouncing emotions. Either they’ve been exceeded beyond my wildest dreams and I soar, or they’ve been devastatingly unmet and I plunge.
I’m intentionally thinking through my expectations, what they’re leading me to, and how they affect me. I’m trying to learn what expectation looks like amidst hope. Are expectations all bad? Is it possible to hope without having expectations? Should I? To me often, hope and expectation become a jumbled and confusing mass of excitement and disappointment.
Hope keeps me moving forward and pursuing what I believe in. Expectations keep me from fully enjoying the journey. But the expectations also keep me working hard in my pursuit. They remind me that people are watching my work and behavior and believe certain things about me; things that I want to be true of me. So expectations also provide accountability to becoming who it is that I want to become.
It seems expectations are not fully good or fully bad. They need to be put in their proper place and carry the “right” amount of weight. Trouble is, I don’t have a scale to measure my expectations. It seems that I realize I’ve become too heavy on one side only after my expectations haven’t been met.
I’d love to hear your thoughts. Can you relate? When are expectations appropriate? How do they affect you? What do you do with them? How are hopes and expectations linked for you, and what do you do about it?