Own My Growth

Helping folks with practical tips to manage themselves better

Your Satisfaction Is In Your Expectations

Manage Your Expectations
Manage Your Expectations To Feel Better

Your satisfaction is in your expectations.

  • You join a new organization, thinking you will rock it. But you encounter unexpected challenges. You think that you have joined the wrong place.
  • A Salesperson cold calls prospects hoping to have a 10% response rate. He experiences a 5% conversion rate. He feels disturbed.
  • Someone is on a diet expecting to lose 5Kgs in a month., but he loses only 1 Kg. He is ready to give up.
  • A writer starts a Blog with an expectation of 5K followers in 6 months. She manages only 500 followers. She feels she is not cut out for the job.

An average experience preceded by a high expectation will always result in disappointment.

In contrast, the same average expectation preceded by a low expectation creates a delight.

Instead of expecting a 10% conversion rate, if you expected a 3% conversion rate, you would have felt on the top of the world for having experienced a 5% conversion rate for your sales calls.

When your expectation and experience match, you experience a sense of satisfaction.

When your expectations and desires outpace your reality, you will always feel something lacking. 

Sometimes you tend to give up too soon. You think, “Maybe I am not cut out for this role or this place,” and you look at alternatives hoping the experience there will be better.

Don’t Confuse Ambition and Expectation.

Ambition is that inherent desire to achieve a particular outcome, goal, or aim. It is what fuels your willingness to commit to the effort necessary to achieve the goal.  

On the other hand, an expectation is a belief that something will happen in a particular way. An expectation always leads to feelings of disappointment and dissatisfaction. It is an attachment to people, things, and outcomes we wish we could control, but we don’t.

So set your ambitions high but keep your expectations realistic initially. Give yourself the time and space to understand the factors that contribute to the fulfillment of your ambition. Figure out what skills you need to develop to achieve your goals.

I have the following mental model to describe how to set the right expectations.

Even if the results surprise you on the upside, enjoy the sense of delight but don’t get your expectations high. Instead, focus on improving your core abilities slowly and steadily. The result will be the reality, but how you perceive the outcome is entirely an imaginary point of reference against an expectation you have created in your mind. Your feeling of disappointment is directly proportional to the distance between your expectations and reality.

Things are always as they are. You suffer feelings of elation or dissatisfaction based on the expectations you create in your mind. Manage your expectations and you will experience satisfaction in all your pursuits.

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