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  • Writer's pictureKeisha Savage

Managing unrealistic Expectations

It is week two of Mental Health Awareness Month and this week I want to talk about managing expectations, especially the unrealistic ones. Managing expectations is a free yet priceless tool that can help to regulate mood, decrease frustration, improve relationships, set goals, and can help to move us through forgiveness towards acceptance. Many of us do not even realize that some of the expectations we set for ourselves, and others are unrealistic, harmful, and unkind. Unrealistic expectations I hear the most often are:

  • They should have known

  • I should be over this by now

  • They should be (insert expectation here) by (insert age here)

  • I must be perfect

  • Pushing through

  • I can change them

  • If/then statements

Managing expectations is not the same as not having any expectations at all. It is human to have expectations but the ones we set for ourselves and others at times are unrealistic, unattainable, and extremely high. Managing expectations does not mean that you are settling or unmotivated but that you are exploring life through a different, more accurate lens. So, what are some ways we can go about managing these unrealistic expectations? We can manage ourunrealistic expectations by:

  • Asking questions of ourselves and others

  • Communicating our needs

  • Self discovery-what I want/need versus what I have been told/learned

  • Making room for a gratitude ritual

  • Examining the evidence

  • Being present in the now

  • Setting boundaries

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