Stop Expecting (And Trying to Change People) and Start Accepting

I find my life is a lot easier the lower I keep my expectations. ~ Bill Watterson

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We expect so much from ourselves, other people and life in general. And it’s almost always different from reality.
That’s how we bring disappointment into our days. And live with regrets, discontent, lack of purpose and no hope.

We have so many expectations in our relationships, for example, that are beyond reality. We create an idea in our heads of our partner, how we want him to react to what we say and do, how we want him to change once he’s with us, etc.

We build an imaginary version of this person and the more we focus on it, the further it gets from how things really are.

But the other person is an individual, and nothing he does, says or thinks can be predicted.
Which is not a bad thing. It’s just life, full of surprises.

But instead of enjoying them, here we are – being discontent because people don’t meet our expectations and events didn’t turn out as planned.

And with wanting and expecting comes suffering.

If we decide to have a healthy relationship with another person, however, we should first let go of all the things we expect him to do, and accept him for who he is.
Then, whatever he does, we will be happy and take it as a part of his unique identity.

Don’t try to change people. Stop wanting something from them. Don’t expect them to behave the way you imagine them to.
Instead, let them be who they are and enjoy the time you have left together.

That applies to every other aspect of life: Stop expecting, start accepting

Also, always be aware of the fact that life has some limits. Don’t expect things that are beyond them because you can lose even what you have now.
And then you’ll realize you actually had just enough to be happy.

Not only do we expect, but we do it too much. People have limits, but our fantasies don’t.

When you stop expecting people to be perfect, you can like them for who they are. ~ Donald Miller

So that’s just another thing we need to eliminate from our life, another barrier on the way to a happy and peaceful living that we have to get rid of.

What will you do today to expect less and enjoy more?

See also:

Toss your expectations into the ocean
The secret of success: Lower your expectations
Letting people be

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Lidiya K

Lidiya K

Author, blogger and podcaster in the fields of self-improvement and life hacking. Creator of Let's Reach Success.
Full-time freelance writer. Lifestyle designer.
Lidiya K

4 Comments

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  1. I try to expect as much from people around me as I expect from me: about nothing. I disappointed myself so many times in the past that every accomplishement is a nice surprise.

    1. Nice approach.
      That’s the good thing about disappointments. At some point we just get tired of that, let go of expectations and ideals we have in our minds. And just like that things get easier and we soon see improvement 🙂

  2. This post is so real, it reminds me of an article I read recently about a woman who left the love of her life because she thought she could find someone who could offer her more, she essentially thought the grass would be greener with someone who could give not only what she needed emotionally but financially, someone with a more worldly perspective. But she found out that the grass wasn’t greener and the love of your life is priceless. I also encountered this when watching a film about a character in a movie who did something as similar. I’m coming to terms with some of the same issues in my life currently. This post was thought provoking. If you want to read more on the journey I’m personally taking visit http://www.raenewedlifestyle.wordpress.com.

    1. Thanks for the comment. Great examples.

      I stopped by your blog and checked out a few posts. I like how you analyze your thoughts and actions and get deeper to find meaning. Self-analysis is a crucial step to change.

      You really are being honest with yourself. Not many people do that these days.

      I’ve realized that only if we get to know ourselves – accept, trust, love and appreciate who we are right now, can we have a stable relationship with other human beings.

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