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Expectations: Why You Should Have Them

When I think about past friends who mocked my expectations over the years, I noticed a common thread between them, their lives remain stagnant. There's no growth because they don't push themselves or others around them, and they're not happy.
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Smiling man looking out over desert canyon at sunset
Smiling man looking out over desert canyon at sunset

There's countless quotes I see online surrounding expectations, mainly advising not to have any so you'll never be disappointed. My friends believe having expectations of people leads to resentments. Let me be clear, I don't want a person who is without flaws, in fact I'm drawn to people who have many, it's wisdom and scars from life. But I will proudly be in the minority who will not submit to the corny clichés of accepting people for who they are. I have expectations and you should, too!

Maybe it's because I grew up in Hollywood where a moral code is considered a choice of the night, like one's outfit. If you're afraid of being disappointed, then you're hanging out with the wrong people.

Disappointment shouldn't be your fear, let it be your beacon of light, indicating those you DON'T want close to you.

Day to day examples: if I'm constantly cleaning up after a roommate, I should do it on my own accord without expectations that she'll catch on and help. But let's be real, after months of watching me clean your sloppy life up and you don't think to contribute, it's a problem.

If I'm always checking in to see if my boyfriend wants me to pick up supper before heading home it should be because I care whether he's hungry or not. So when he comes home with take out for one, should I not be disappointed I wasn't thought of in the same way? I'd be bummed but I wouldn't say anything. It's about common courtesies. If one is diligent with thoughtful gestures, do they simply care more? Are they the less selfish person?

On to the next level, if I operate by the theory of most and don't expect anything from people, then where's my inspiration to strive for more? If I'm not to expect certain behaviors from people in my life, what motivates me or them to develop into being the best version of ourselves?

If I didn't have expectations I wouldn't be a national broadcaster and author. It took more than goals to push myself past the hurdles and decade long commitment, I expected greatness for myself. And if I didn't expect more from the people around me, I'd still be hanging out with drug dealers and women who choose a love-less relationship for financial stability over working, because both appeared at one point easier than my chosen path of 12-hour work days. The "do nothing bitches", as Ronda Rousey calls them, along with the drug dealers I knew were fun, nice people, but they didn't care about much, or respect themselves and it affected me.

I have an ex that would say I want too much of his emotional and mental being. Why is that bad? We've become predators who now hunt for the next love interest online, we swipe or delete until we're satisfied, we text rather than talk and we half listen until we want intimacy. Given this, I expect a man to court me the old fashioned way, I do expect him to let me inside his mind, heart and to share his life. It's expecting a lover to be vulnerable, because that's what's connects and bonds us.

Same at work, if you screw up don't blame anyone, take responsibility for it. I expect you to do your job so I can carry out mine, because we all affect one another. We're connected through past behaviors, which in turn affect our attitudes in the present.

My expectations are really common courtesies. I'm expecting you to refresh your own moral code when dealing with others and apply it. That's all. I'd prefer us to feel and think more about one another and to choose honesty over cowardly acts.

Working in a profession witnessing the worst human acts from reporting the news, I'd like to see more acts of selflessness. I shouldn't have to expect you to be a thoughtful person, you just should be.

Ladies, think back to the last time someone opened the door for you, man or woman. Because I recall doors slamming shut on me because that extra few-second hold was obviously too much for the person. I expect you not to lie, or cheat...I'd rather you walk away. I expect you to care about strangers, and feel something if you see someone suffering instead of turning your head.

Have manners. If you're shaking your head, then maybe you're one of those self-absorbed people, walking in a fog of self, rather than noticing others around you.

I don't have to point out how badly our state of affairs have become, from the presidential race, to oppression and suppression in our streets and homes, expecting more of one another is a start.
If I don't expect to be treated a certain way, I will end up with no self-respect. Expectations make us strive to be better as long as they're realistic and rational. In retrospect, the men who have told me my expectations were too high, were those still wearing a protective armor guarding their hearts. I'm fearless, if you're not, we're not meant to be.

When I think about past friends who mocked my expectations over the years, I noticed a common thread between them, their lives remain stagnant. There's no growth because they don't push themselves or others around them, and they're not happy.

If I'm a bit demanding of your character, look within yourself and ask why that is a bad thing? If I fight for more of myself, more of you and that you walk at an equal pace, wouldn't that be soaring to new heights as a team? Shields don't belong in love, barriers don't exist when chasing your dreams, expect to break free of both and enter another level of yourself and your life.