Expectations are everywhere – from the moment you get up in the morning, expecting your newspaper to be outside your doorstep; expecting house helpers to be on time; expecting our child to score good grades; expecting your spouse to remember your birthday and anniversary day - the list is endless.
All relationship involves expectation; whether it is at home, at work or even in the neighborhood. When these expectations are not met, we often become disappointed.
The gap between ‘What is Expected’ and ‘Reality’ creates tension and pain; wider the gap, the greater the pain. It is only by bridging this gap, that we can effectively manage expectations.
The root cause for this is a lack of communication in sharing our expectation with others. Especially with the ones who are dear to us – we think that if they care for us and work with us they would know what our expectations are. Also, having unrealistic expectations never helps, as it just increases the distance between reality and expectation, leading to stress.
Here are some useful tips for effective expectation management in all relationships.
Communication: Before you commit to the task, actively communicate with the target group to get a sense of what their expectations are and vice versa. Hence you will not have difficulty in finding what they really want out of you.
Setting realistic expectations: If you feel the expectations cannot be achieved in the current form, then request for more time to plan actions to make it happen.
Commitment: Meeting the desired expectations require your full commitment to the task once you have well understood and are reasonably sure that it can be achieved or over achieved.