Why do we have expectations?
I was listening this morning to a romantic song from Neil Diamond called Songs of Life. Part of the lyrics say “forever more”. It is a touching song and it got me thinking about my expectations and if they were reasonable or not.
As much as possible I try not to expect anything. This is very difficult because normal human nature is to expect everything. We believe that when we treat others with respect and love, we should get the same in return. It often doesn’t happen that way. Yet, when others treat us back with respect it is welcome and always appreciated.
My biggest problem is in regards to cars. I always buy cars hoping to have a great experience and I rarely do. I think my expectation is when you buy a new car, or a leased car, or a certified car, you will have a certain experience. I don’t want to stress about transportation so I usually buy more car that I need. However all the toys in those cars cause me to stress in other ways. Yes I know this is first world problem. I have so many toys in the car, poor me.
I think we are disappointed by what is most important to us. I have said before that because I love technology I have certain expectations. I expect from working in IT, that computer systems are fast, reliable and accurate. If they are not that way, I have problems with that. When cars are not that way, it is frustrating because cars like anything else are based on science.
However with that said, there are times when things should work a certain way but the complexities of life interfere. That is fine on a temporary basis, but should not be the norm. Again my expectation saying it should not be, rather than accepting life as complicated as it is.
I think our expectations are a way to simplify life to better manage and deal with it. I think we are forced to estimate risks based on terrible or no information because we don’t have time/resources to really think about things. I think most thinking is not based on facts, but on feelings and so when we encounter things in life, it isn’t because it was thoughtfully done but just randomly put together.
What should we expect in life? I don’t know, but probably far less than what we currently expect. The less you expect, the happier you are.