Are Your Expectations Toxic?

I realized that often times, the reason why I get depressed or carry a lot of stress is because of the expectations I have set for myself.
And as a fellow human being, some of those expectations aren’t realistic.

And I mean realistic in the sense where it’s probably impossible to stick to it 100% or impossible to achieve in the first place.

And it made me wonder…why do we set such high expectations for ourselves?

I’m not saying that the goals we set for ourselves or the standards we set for ourselves is bad.
But it can quickly become an unhealthy obsession.

“Things should be better by now.”
“I’m a horrible [insert identity].”
“Why aren’t I achieving my goals?”
“Why am I still struggling in the same way I did the previous year?”
“Why aren’t I progressing?”

I do think it’s important to reflect on these questions (more in a positive light) to improve our lives and to learn and grow from our mistakes, but I think it’s also crucial to remember that life doesn’t offer us a straight path to success, because when has it ever?

It likes to toughen us up and throw valuable life lessons at us along the way.
And sometimes it beats us to the ground without any hope.

And it feels like when we take two steps forward, we’re taking 10 steps back.

It’s a daunting process.

And when you’re in the middle of that process, remember that wondering why your life sucks , why you aren’t succeeding, why you’re a failure isn’t doing you any good.

At this point, it’s important to remember that this journey counts for something.
I can’t tell you what for or when it’ll come in handy, but I do know that this spot you are dwelling in, it is temporary.

I often feel like when we have nothing left in our reserves to keep pressing on, it’s God’s way of reminding us that we should always be relying on him.

Because so often, when things are going well, we tell ourselves, “Thanks God! But I can take it from here.”
When God, our Loving Father, wants to be with us the whole way.

He doesn’t deplete us, we ourselves do.

So the next time you’re stuck in the place of wondering how your life could have gotten so bad, remember to let go of your expectations, at least temporarily, because it can only drag you down lower if you keep beating yourself with it.
And remember that God renews hope.

So always look to Him for His grace, hope, and love to keep going when you feel like giving up.

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