From the moment we are born, we are subject to expectations. We’re expected to cry, sleep, feed and poop. These expectations are basic human instincts, and they are indicators of healthy development – but as we mature, these expectations become more complex and we also learn to expect things from ourselves.
Growing up, we learn to “expect” to finish a university degree, attain a job, own a car, purchase a house, earn enough money to live a life that exceeds that of those around us – so we flog ourselves at work – telling ourselves that “it’s worth it for the money”.
What would happen if we decided to expect happiness? If we expected to live a life of health – one that didn’t require medications for the smallest of deficiencies? How would our lives change if we expected to wake up with a smile on our faces, and do in life exactly what it is that we have a true passion for every day, rather than waking up and cringing at the idea an 8hr work day?
Perhaps a better question would be – how would your mindset change if happiness and health became one of the main focuses in your life?
Now some of you may be sitting there thinking ‘well I do expect to be happy and free of illness – why would I expect to be sick and mopey?’ – but do the actions in your life reflect this? When you think of going to work, do you expect you’ll be smiling all day? When you wake up at 5am in the middle of winter, do you expect to be excited to rip into your day? Or are you just wishing for the weekend when you can relax because you don’t have to see that annoying co-worker who sits across from you?
Personally, I’m someone who struggles to stick with something that I don’t find enjoyable, and I’ll admit, I’ve dropped out of a lot of things that I have tried, and jobs that I’ve started purely because I absolutely hated them. However, I have stuck to many things as well – and when I was thinking about this topic, I realised that those things were the things in life that I had a real passion for and was completely enthused with. These include dance, my degree (despite my Major selection being slightly rocky in the beginning), my first real job in the health industry, and recipe development/photography.
Moving forward I’m taking note of what I really enjoy about these things:
If you’re feeling stuck in what you’re doing, unfulfilled, and as though you’re just going through the motions of life – take a moment to jot down the few activities that you REALLY enjoy. Then take a look back at them and draw out a couple of common themes amongst them (as I have above). These themes should truly reflect with you and what you enjoy most.
From here, don’t just dismiss what you have done. Create a new expectation for yourself. Expect to implement more of what you love in your life, and most of all – EXPECT A CHANGE.
'Date Me' Peanut Butter Slice