graph of stock share market declining

Great Expectations

Investors see it time and time again. A company announces record breaking quarterly profits. Billion dollar growth. Unprecedented results!

Instantly their share price plummets.

And it all comes down to one simple thing – expectations.

Some businesses celebrate at breaking even, some high-five at a -2% decline. Some businesses are disappointed at +65% growth. Others rejoice at ‘flat’ performance.

Expectations are premeditated resentments.

When expectations aren’t met, people get angry, upset, frustrated, disappointed and worried. More often than not, expectations live in the inner world of our thoughts and don’t get verbalised. Then we react poorly to the behaviour of someone that we never communicated our expectations to in the first place.

“Holding on to anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die”

Buddha

Lowering your expectations doesn’t mean that you are lowering your standards, abandoning your values or diminishing your desire for growth. All you are doing, is lowering your expectations. Giving yourself grace.

Letting go of your expectations creates space for something far more powerful – agreements.

Expectations often go unspoken or are given to someone. Agreements are mutually created. And when people create something, they tend to feel that it is part of them. They ‘buy in’ and are far more likely to respect an agreement.

As an adult, do you still play the ‘I’ve got news’ game? You know how it goes:

“Do you want the good news or the bad news first?”.

I bet you also have a fabulous rationale for why the good news should come first, or why the bad news should come first, right?

It’s time to stop thinking about good news and bad news. It’s just news. How you respond to it is only a function of your expectations.


Expect less. Create more. Surprise yourself. 


If you are still desperately trying to prove yourself and live up to someone else’s expectations, whether they are alive or not, you are most welcome to return those expectations to sender. Anytime. Free of charge. They can have their expectations back and instead, step courageously as an adult into the creation of an agreement with you.

When we stop expecting the future to go perfectly to plan, we are welcomed back to the present. The only place where action occurs.

“The secret to happiness is having low expectations.”

Warren Buffett

When we invest in something, we expect a return on our investment (ROI). It ultimately comes back to the expectations of the individual and what we expect to get back in future, for our investment now.

small leaf plant trying to grow from coins on table

Paradoxically, ROL (Return on Legacy) doesn’t exist, because legacy is not concerned with ‘my expectations’. Legacy exists to humbly serve others. They were right the whole time – to give, truly is to receive.

And after all of this – who do we usually hold the highest, harshest expectations of?

Ourselves…

Be kind and gentle with yourself.

Those around you will notice the difference.

Move on from expectations. Create agreements. Charge toward legacy.

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