“Do not expect anything from others and you will not be disappointed.” When I first read this, I thought what a harsh concept to wrap one’s brain around. We all have expectation, not only from the people we love but the people we work with and even strangers. I had to think about this concept and how it affects my journey with life and chronic pain. Expectations from the people close to me have caused me a lot of anger and sadness. In return that anger and sadness has a huge impact on my management with chronic pain. Whether or not my expectations are always reasonable or not really does not matter. Once I really work hard to not expect things from the people I love, I seem to end up receiving a lot more than I would have expected in the first place. For example, as a stay at home mom I feel that I work just as hard (if not harder at times) than the people in my life that work a “real job.” As a stay at home mother, I just do not receive a pay check. When I begin putting expectations (without verbalizing them) on my husband to help more with our daughter on the weekends I end up getting angry when my expectations are not fulfilled which in turn usually would end up in a needless argument, which I am sure many married couples face. I do not want to waste my energy on anger.
For this week, lets all work on lowering the expectations we put on the people that surround us. You may be surprised to see how much more comes to you once you stop expecting anything. This is a lot harder than it seems as you read this, trust me. I have worked on this and it is hard! Instead of expecting more from the people around me this week, I am going to expect more of myself. I do not want to disappoint myself and I do not want anyone else to disappoint me. People with chronic pain have enough to worry about, we need to truly work on anger issues and a lot of anger stems from expectations.