Everyday you’re dealing with your fellow humans: at home, at work, in the shops, in traffic, at your children’s school or in the park where you walk the dog.

The attitudes, moods, opinions and actions of others impact you immensely and constantly. The relations you have with others are a perpetual challenge which demand the larger part of your time and attention.

Pay attention when you hear yourself complain about your job… in fact you complain about your colleagues, your manager, your clients, your suppliers or your competitors. In short: people.

The tensions and troubles you experience while dealing with other people, are not caused by who they are, nor by external circumstances.

The challenges you experience are born from your very own, inner expectations. This, actually, is good news. It means that you do not have to helplessly suffer the ‘bad’ or ‘wrong’ behaviour of others. It also means that you’re not a random victim of unfortunate circumstances.

Your expectations are a strictly inner issue, which means that you can control your troubled relations with others. How? Simply by practising mindfulness.

When you allow your brain to produce unrealistic thoughts without any limits, there is nothing you can do but helplessly expect your manager to be understanding, or expect your partner to be loving and caring, or expect your children to obey you, or expect your clients to be grateful. You may even expect traffic to flow when you’re late, the government to cut taxes, and the economy to flourish so that you’ll have more money to spend on stuff you need.

But of course you know better than this; in life most of your expectations are never met. On the contrary, expectations often prove to be a recipe for disaster, for bitter disappointment, anger, fear, frustration and grief. And it’s an attitude which makes your body, heart and mind suffer quite severely.

How would life be without all these exhausting feelings, which can only grow from your own unrealistic and uncontrolled expectations?

Your life would be totally different if you could let go of unhealthy expectations. I dare say that your life would be a lot easier and brighter!

Imagine if you wouldn't judge others (the fertiliser for growing expectations) and imagine if you wouldn't expect your manager to understand you… imagine that you wouldn't expect your partner to be loving and caring… imagine that you wouldn't expect your children to obey you or your clients to be grateful? How would that feel?

No expectations means no disappointments. No anger. No fear. No frustrations. No grief.

With mindfulness you can learn to recognise expectations, after which you are free to choose to discard this exhausting attitude. And you’ll find that that feels a lot better!


This teaching is part of your Karma Kickstart e-Programme