Expectations (HLD 82)

12 June 2020

I have a favourite online shopping haunt. Ok I have a few, but this one produces badges and other things. Primarily aimed at women, particularly women to enjoy a bit of craft, they also have a range of quirky badges that are suitable for everyone.

Like the “Adulting” pin I bought for a friend’s 30th birthday, I have also bought one for another friend that I haven’t given to her as yet… so whatever you do don’t tell Sharon (tag) about this because it will ruin the surprise.

Her badge says “Didn’t stab anyone today”.

She works in a high pressure work place and I suspect if she had ready access to some sharp implements the ability to inflict a little incision or two would be a tempting proposition 🙂

So today I want to talk about expectations. Not the expectations other people have on us, because quite frankly unless you’re a brain surgeon or a football umpire, other people’s expectations of you say more about them than they do about you.

(Yes yes, I know – I’m wrong in a myriad of ways. But I don’t have time or patience to list the entire list of people who you should quite rightly have expectations about…. let’s just all accept that you shouldn’t have such high expectations of me, ok?)

The point today is that we need to go a little easy on ourselves, some times. Many people struggle with very high standards that they set themselves, which leads to a lot of unnecessary stress. Maybe we just need to wear a badge stating that we didn’t stab anyone today?

I have some other favourite badges, of course. “Got dressed today” and “Participation Award” are a couple I really related to. 

Other people expect stuff from you all the time – as a housewife, you’re expected to make sure everyone has clean clothes, the bathrooms aren’t the breeding ground for new mould species, and that whatever grocery item only one person uses has run out. As a full time worker, you’re expected to just leap out of bed every morning with the same enthusiasm as you did on day one of that job, no matter how many years ago it was. You’re expected to show initiative, to not rock the boat and just follow orders, to not ask questions, to ask questions all the time, and to be prompt in your meal breaks. 

But it’s the personal expectations that are the ones that hit hardest, I think. The ones where you expect yourself to always remember peoples’ names, you expect yourself to be on top of the food shopping and not neglect to check if the yoghurt supply is getting low, you expect yourself to always attain good results in any educational endeavour, or to always have a particular standard of hair dressing or grooming (I think the pandemic has challenged a few people in this area!).

Some personal expectations I think you should really really make a priority – brushing your teeth and wearing clothes when you walk out of the house, for example.

But maybe some days we just need to slap on our “Participation Award” badge on and go ahead and enjoy the day.

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