The Importance of Realistic Expectations

Kevin Mahoney

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#1
If you have ever made any substantial decisions in your life or if you have set out to achieve any sizeable goals, you have no doubt come to appreciate the importance of having realistic expectations. Whether we are looking at a career change, pursuing a degree, or making a large purchase, we must be realistic in our expectations. For example, an MBA from Harvard sounds like a great goal (dream) but the likelihood of being accepted to the program, funding it, and making life’s logistics fit the required time commitment might not be realistic. However, there are a lot of quality MBA programs that might fit our current life situation and provide the opportunity and growth we seek.

Chad Carden (2016) addresses the importance of realistic expectations by stating “Expectations impact attitudes and mindset. If we meet or exceed someone’s expectations (ours included), we tend to have positive attitudes and mindset. The reverse is also true: If we don’t meet expectations, we tend to have a less-than-stellar attitude or mindset.” While we definitely do not want to aim low, setting unrealistic expectations can result in a loss of motivation and limit future success. The challenge we face is setting expectations that will push us and yet be achievable.

Do you find it challenging to set realistic expectations for yourself and others? If so, what are the causes that influence us to have realistic expectations?



Carden, C. February 1, 20016. This Is What Happens When You Set Unrealistic Expectations. Retrieved from http://fortune.com/2016/02/01/entrepreneur-set-realistic-expectations/
 

Visitor

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#2
Do you find it challenging to set realistic expectations for yourself and others?
Not for myself, but others have their own beliefs and fears which sets their limits as to what is realistic or not.
If so, what are the causes that influence us to have realistic expectations?
One belief I strongly hold is that nothing is impossible, and anything that seems impossible has not yet been understood how it could be possible.
When I understand how it could be possible, and it is what I want to achieve, then I break it down into manageable bits and achieve each bit along the way.

At school I was the class dunce. Afterwards I got tired of working as a lacky, and wanted to be of best service to other lackies. So I re-educated myself at home, studying school books for a year, so I could pass university entrance exams. Then studied three years full-time to get Degree in Counselling with honors. So I went from dunce to dux.
 

Ricardo Ortiz

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#4
I believe this the part of working with honesty. How honest are you with yourself. If you are setting unrealistic expectations then something in you is false, it's ego talking or the other ideal false you. When we are honest with ourselves we put great goals, honest goals, passionate goals. Goals that are reachable because we are honest. Because it sucks to achieve a goal and at the end be unsatisfied.


If you have ever made any substantial decisions in your life or if you have set out to achieve any sizeable goals, you have no doubt come to appreciate the importance of having realistic expectations. Whether we are looking at a career change, pursuing a degree, or making a large purchase, we must be realistic in our expectations. For example, an MBA from Harvard sounds like a great goal (dream) but the likelihood of being accepted to the program, funding it, and making life’s logistics fit the required time commitment might not be realistic. However, there are a lot of quality MBA programs that might fit our current life situation and provide the opportunity and growth we seek.

Chad Carden (2016) addresses the importance of realistic expectations by stating “Expectations impact attitudes and mindset. If we meet or exceed someone’s expectations (ours included), we tend to have positive attitudes and mindset. The reverse is also true: If we don’t meet expectations, we tend to have a less-than-stellar attitude or mindset.” While we definitely do not want to aim low, setting unrealistic expectations can result in a loss of motivation and limit future success. The challenge we face is setting expectations that will push us and yet be achievable.

Do you find it challenging to set realistic expectations for yourself and others? If so, what are the causes that influence us to have realistic expectations?



Carden, C. February 1, 20016. This Is What Happens When You Set Unrealistic Expectations. Retrieved from http://fortune.com/2016/02/01/entrepreneur-set-realistic-expectations/
 

Dennielle Lee

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#5
You're limiting yourself if you confine yourself to only pursuing goals based on what you think is realistic to achieve.
I must say I have to agree with you! Although there is merit to Kevin's post, not meeting expectations either yourself or another has set for us can be destructive and can bring on a torrent of negative emotions and a 'less than stellar mindset". I would say that bridging these two positions requires a discussion of failure. In relation to Kevin's post I would say failure equates to a failure to meet expectations.

I wholeheartedly believe that we should reach for the stars and dream big! The problem is that we are inevitably going to fail somewhere along the way, possibly many times; do we allow this failure to serve as an impediment or driver for our success? If you are able to view your failure as an asset than failing to meet expectations won't be so emotionally and mentally harmful. We need to view failure as important moments for personal growth and look for the lessons that are to be learnt.

It's important to remember that EVERYONE fails and that the most successful people have failed the most amount of times. They have succeeded because they first failed and the reason they failed is because they TRIED. The ones who have failed the least have tried the least.

There are a number of famous anecdotes on failure but one of my favourite is the one about Thomas Edison who never gave up his passion for inventing, he obviously had what at the time would have been a very unrealistic expectation when he set out to invent the light bulb and he persevered even after failing 10,000 times! I think his quote on this sums up how we should think of failure “I have not failed 10,000 times—I’ve successfully found 10,000 ways that will not work.”

:)
 

ang.necole11

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#6
Set big goals but with smaller, side goals too. So... let's say you want to lose 100 lbs. That is going to take some time and after losing 20 or 30 lbs, it may be discouraging. So make it a goal to lose 100 lbs, sure. But also have goals to have dropped 10 or so lbs in a reasonable amount of time.