Careful Setting Those Expectations

Careful Setting Those ExpectationsWe all set expectations, of ourselves, of others and of the outcome of situations in our lives.

So it is very easy to be disappointed when those expectations are not met.

What you must remember, is that your happiness is in your own hands, so being unhappy when your hopes and expectations are dashed is your own decision.

In my case, I find that taking some quiet time to examine why I am disappointed solves a lot of these problems. Sometimes my own expectations are set too high, unrealistic even, sometimes the simple acceptance that those expectations are not those of others explains the outcome.

Allowing your expectations of others to be, even in part, the basis of your happiness shows a lack of Wisdom, so learn from the pain, don’t repeat the mistake, and move on.

This is, of course, far easier to say than to do. But to help maintain your happiness, set realistic expectations for yourself and accept that failing to meet those expectations does not mean failing completely.

Managing Expectations

Great Expectations Miss Havisham?We all live with hopes and expectations, of ourselves, of others, and of the outcome of situations in our lives, and it is all too easy to be disappointed when those expectations are not fully met.

However, you must also remember, that your happiness is in your own hands, so being unhappy when your expectations are dashed, is your own decision.

In my own experience, I find that taking some quiet time to examine why I am disappointed helps to solve the problem. Sometimes, upon reflection, my expectations are too high, even unrealistic you might say, sometimes the simple acceptance that my expectations are not those of others explains the outcome.

But allowing your expectation of others to be, even in part, the basis of your own happiness shows a lack of wisdom, so learn from the pain, don’t repeat the mistake and move forward.

So to help maintain your happiness, set realistic and flexible expectations for yourself and of others, and accept that failing to meet those expectations does not mean failing altogether.

Well, If You Will Ask …

Qs and AsI learned a really important lesson today, one which at my age, you might expect I had already learned. When you ask someone a question, you must be prepared to receive an answer, and not necessarily the answer you were expecting.

Without going into any detail, I asked a light hearted question of someone this evening, and already had the answer ready in my own head. To my huge surprise, I actually got a completely different response to the one I expected and it really threw me.

After further discussion, and not a little self reflection, the mini wobble was stabilised, but it did teach me a good lesson as I said. That is, to never ask a question of someone unless you are truly prepared to deal with the answer.

An All Round View

An All Round ViewI have always been prone to setting my expectations too high, and that leads to disappointment when the expectation isn’t met. My Dad, on the other hand, always seemed to be a bit pessimistic, he never appeared to have very high expectations, never got overexcited about things, so didn’t allow himself to show disappointment, or that was the way it looked to me.

Since I have been practicing Nichiren Buddhism I have an inner strength that helps me through difficult times. It is a great comfort and I would recommend it to anyone who is struggling with issues or problems.

The strange thing is that Buddhism doesn’t always make the problems go away, although that does sometimes happen, but it gives me a different way of looking at the situation and a focus that makes the problems more easy to understand and to bear.

In general, my life has been pretty easy. I have a very loving family, great parents and had a very stable home life in my formative years. I’ve been through a few troughs, the usual things like losing my grandparents and my father, and failed relationships, the same as every one else. I’m about to set off on a new career path of teaching, which could prove to be a challenge, but I truly believe that my inner strength will see me able to cope much better now.

If I were to try to pinpoint the single most important reason for this, I would say it was a new found mental calm. Now I’ve never been a fighter. At school I used to use humour to get out of the usual confrontations all kids get into. But I was prone to letting my feelings show, particularly when disappointment was involved.

It does seem that because I can now see the situation from all angles, just like those images on the web, where you can spin the item around and look at it every which way, I can rationalise things more easily. Being able to see a situation from other peoples perspective allows me to make sense of how things appear to them, and understand why they are reacting in the way they are.

It has changed my life, or at least the way I look at it, and it can help anyone. Maybe it could help you.

NOW … I Want It Now !!!

CalmnessSo often, and I am as guilty as anyone, we want things to happen now.

Our modern frantic way of life, clever marketing and the bombardment of advertising we all endure, have left us all lacking a little patience. We are encouraged to spend before we can afford it, to want everything yesterday and to make unrealistic demands on ourselves and others.

So next time you are stuck behind the nervous learner driver at a busy junction, queuing at the check-in desk or find yourself tempted to have a go at that overworked shop assistant, just see things from the others viewpoint and stay cool, calm and collected.

Not only will it make your wait much more pleasant, but your calmness will transmit to those around you and help them relax too. They may even surprise you by being grateful or by going the extra mile to help.

Remember, everyone has the world of Buddhahood within them, so as the T shirt might say, stay calm and help them let it shine.

Unrealistic Expectations

Too Great ExpectationsWe all live with expectations, of ourselves, of others and of the outcome of situations in our lives, and it is all too easy to be disappointed when those expectations are not met.

However, you must remember, your happiness is in your own hands, so being unhappy when your expectations are dashed, is your own decision.

For myself, I find that taking some quiet time to examine why I am disappointed solves a lot of these problems. Sometimes my expectations are too high, unrealistic you might say, sometimes the simple acceptance that those expectations are not those of others explains the outcome.

Allowing your expectations of others to be, even in part, the basis of your happiness shows a certain lack of Wisdom, so learn from the pain, don’t repeat the mistake and move on.

So to help maintain your happiness, set realistic expectations for yourself and accept that failing to meet those expectations does not mean failing completely.

Chop, Chop

Getting The ChopBefore I became a Nichiren Buddhist I found disappointments very difficult to handle, so today, being told that my services are no longer required at work, I was inwardly pleased with the manner in which I handled the fall of the axe.

I have always been prone to setting my expectations too high, and that leads to disappointment when the expectation isn’t met. My Dad, on the other hand, always seemed to be a little pessimistic, he never appeared to have very high expectations, never got overexcited about anything, so didn’t allow himself to feel disappointment, or that was the way it looked to me.

Since I have been practicing Nichiren Buddhism I have an inner strength that helps me through difficult times. It is a great comfort and I would recommend it to anyone who is struggling with issues or problems.

The strange thing is that Buddhism doesn’t always make the problems go away, although that does sometimes happen, but it gives me a different way of looking at the situation and a focus that makes the problems more easy to understand and to bear.

In general, my life has been very easy. I have a very loving family, great parents and had a very stable home life in my formative years. I’ve been through a few troughs, the usual things like losing my grandparents, my father and failed relationships, the same as every one else. I’m not looking to test my practice, but I truly believe that my inner strength is helping me cope with such times much better now.

If I were to try to pinpoint the single most important reason for this, I would say it was a new found mental calm. I’ve never been a fighter. At school I used to use humour to get out of the usual scrapes all kids get into. But I was prone to letting my feeling show, particularly when disappointment was involved.

Now, because I can see the situation from all angles, just like those reviews on the web, where you can spin the item around and look at it every which way, I can rationalise more easily. Being able to see a situation from other peoples perspective allows me to make sense of how things appear to them, and understand why they are reacting in the way they are.

It has changed my life, or at least the way I look at it, and it can help anyone. Maybe it could help you.

What If ???

What IfSometimes, we find ourselves in situations, or potential situations, were we are a little unsure of what the outcome may be. Our minds race, we mull over the possibilities, the what ifs, the maybes, and it can be all too easy to form ideas in our minds as to how things will pan out.

That’s fine, and perfectly normal, as long as we don’t let these expectations run away with us. Having a preconceived idea is one thing, but pinning our hopes on that idea is a recipe for disaster. Things rarely, if ever, go exactly as we imagine.

So the trick is to keep a level head, let events unfold as they will, and be tolerant of the inevitable differences between what we expect, or would like, and what actually comes to pass.

But as someone once said ‘Be careful what you wish for, you might just get it’. Conversely it has also been said that ‘That thing you wished for, the thing you never got, might have been the most fortunate moment you could ever imagine’. So muse way, daydream to your hearts content, but remember that at the end of the day, the truth of the situation will become clear soon enough.

Failure To Launch

The Dower HouseAfter a day of low key retail therapy, shopping for knickers and a bikini for Josie, we were all looking forward to a pleasant early evening picnic up on the hill just along from the Dower House in Stapleton.

We were expecting to watch the balloons launching from Ashton Court, and the weather was beautiful, bright and sunny with nice cooling breeze. So with picnic packed and arrangements made with the rest of the team, we set off on the short walk to the hill.

By the time we made the climb to the top, Sam, Georgie, Nigel and little Merrin had already set up camp and were tucking into their picnic. We laid out the blanket and tucker and made ourselves comfortable while we waited for Charlotte, Rob, Zach and Oliver to arrive.

Now it isn’t the easiest place to find, even though you can see the big house for miles around, and the Savage clan took the circuitous route to get to us. But it was worth the wait. Sam, Rob and Nigel had fun climbing onto the monument on the top of the hill, the rest of us sat and chatted while we munched our way through the sandwiches and other goodies.

But the wind was getting up and the temperature dropping as the sun sank behind the hill to the East. We sat and sat, waiting for the balloons to launch but nothing appeared. Rob and I went off to the cottage to get the binoculars and another bottle of water, but by the time we returned, the team were decamped and clambering down the hill.

It was way too cold for the children and way too windy for the balloons, so although we had a great family picnic, the main reason for being there never came to fruition. Still, fun was had by all, families were introduced to families and all in all it was a success, even though we had a failure to launch.

A Great View, But No Balloons

And Relax

And RelaxFollowing yesterday’s cancelled meeting, I have to admit that I was a little apprehensive about the group meeting planned for today. For me, not knowing about a situation is often far worse than the reality turns out to be.

We do work pretty hard, as a team, to keep the wheels of the company’s IT systems well oiled. Sometimes it involves out-of-hours tasks, simply because we can’t do admin in the middle of the working day, sometimes it is a fire fighting exercise, when a website decides to go AWOL, or a hacker decides to try his luck at breaking in.

So when the governor told us that we were going to have our group meeting, and cover the discussions he had with the other department yesterday, a million questions started whizzing around my brain.

The meeting was to be held in a nice quiet local hostelry, so at least the environment was pleasant. But then their Wi-Fi wasn’t working, so we couldn’t go through the discussion points as we had no access to our back office systems. It was a fairly quite, but very tasty lunch, but the questions remained.

So cutting our offsite visit a little short, we reconvened in the boardroom back at the office to hear what Guy had to say. I don’t think I was the only one wondering what he had in store for us. So when it turned out to be a case of miss, or lack of, communication, we gave a collective sigh of relief.

Lesson learned, there is little or no point worrying about issues that it transpires, don’t actually exist. Pointless getting stressed about an imagined set of circumstances, and less than productive to try to second guess the outcome of anything, given little or no information to go on.

We do need to improve our processes, hone our interdepartmental communications, and fine tune our planning strategies. But as far as the worrying was concerned, it was a sad waste of time and effort. I must try harder next time, to remember the lessons of today.

Nice lunch though!

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