I have the rare privilege of making a living from witnessing other people breakthrough and heal their own lives. It's really phenomenal and I've only recently allowed myself to accept it and feel so much gratitude toward my clients and myself for manifesting it.
I want to share all this wisdom I experience with the world, through a book, through webinars, but the thought of that has stressed me out and overwhelmed me. So I turn to you, my reader, on my humble mailing list and offer you the jewels I've gathered and held onto. Some I've found myself, someI've been graciously and courageously given to by others. Today, I write about expectations.
Expectations are amazing. There is no quicker way to distract you from the moment than with an expectation. To have an expectation, we have to project an idea or an image onto something or someone. An idea or an image that hasn't happened yet. Most of the time, it never will happen. Sometimes, it does. Still, every free minute of your experience leading up to that moment is spent processing and reacting to the expectation.
Stress, fear, anger, doubt, worry, anxiety - all stem from expectations. PTSD is an expectation that something traumatic will happen again. Disappointment comes from someone or something (or ourselves) not living up to our expectations. Fear is expecting something horrible is going to happen. Insecurity comes from expecting to be like something or someone else.
Expectations limit our experiences, rather than open us up. Without expectations we're curious, interested, inspired, learning, and in a place of love. It's simple: we can understand and love, or we can defend and fear and hate.
Letting go of expectations is a practice I have every second as a father. I have so many expectations of my daughter running through my head, expectations for all of her friends, and expectations of myself as a parent. When I let go and open up to all possibilities, I'm able to love her in every moment and am instantly more connecting. When I'm expecting I'm really just projecting and evaluating, rather than observing and connecting.
I truly love the work of Byron Katie. She's one of the great masters of self-inquiry. Learning to question your ego and the thoughts that come up when we think of others, ourselves, and our world. If I could offer anything, I would encourage everyone to do 'The Work' which is a formula of self-inquiry to open our minds and surprise our egos. This page gives you everything you need: http://thework.com/en.
The hardest, yet most satisfying thing is to open up our ideas of life and not limit ourselves with expectations. It is then we can be vulnerable, open, surprised, inspired, curious, and in loving connections to ourselves and everything around us.