Unexpected circumstances

Whether you’re stressed, organised or relaxed as you go through life, unexpected circumstances will arise.

It isn’t necessarily anything good or bad but rather something you haven’t planned for, something that you did not anticipate.

Often these things knock us for 6 and we find ourselves stuck or setback. I think that comes from the fact that we aren’t open to the motion of life. We get so caught in wanting things to be a certain way that forget that there’s an infinite number of awesome outcomes that we could be willing to explore.

So next time, instead of pushing back or getting frustrated by unexpected circumstances, remain open to them and maybe even try embracing them.

Meeting expectations

Not those of others but your own.

I think a lot of people have expectations for what they want out of life. And despite the popular phrase that goes something like ‘If you’re dreams don’t scare you they’re not big enough’, high expectations can be overwhelming.

But something that I’ve learnt is that you have to be committed and pace yourself. If you truly want to achieve something it shouldn’t be conditional, you should be dedicated to it.

I’ve also found it useful to check in and like to refer back to something Seth Godin once said about how you’re either talking to the wring people or you’re not making good enough stuff.

And I’m at a point where I can see that just because I’m trying hard doesn’t mean what I’m producing is good enough for the outcome that I want.

When that happens I take a step back and re-group. I think about what I’m doing that is good and how I can make it better.

My expectations of myself are quite frankly ridiculous which is why I find them overwhelming. Plus I often make the mistake of focusing on too much on the end goal instead of simply just doing the work.

I don’t have a roundup or a takeaway as I’m still learning how to manage the expectations I have of myself.

However, what I will share is that if you find yourself getting overwhelmed or frustrated you probably need to change what you’re doing or the way you’re thinking.

The art of the gift

Currently reading linchpin by Seth Godin and learning a whole lot.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the art of gift giving lately. Not in terms of a birthday or Christmas gifts but in daily life.

The small or grand acts of generosity like saying good morning with a genuine smile or offering to help someone without expecting anything in return.

Those acts of generosity brighten people’s day, make them feel seen and are often easy to do.

I’m certain that you would have been on the receiving end of an act of generosity at some point in your life or maybe you’re the giver.

Despite these acts often being easy to do, how many times have you missed or overlooked the opportunity to give.

Sometimes we get so caught up in our own worlds and our stuff that we can’t even see the opportunity we have to make an offering in the world.

But when you do stop and choose to give not out of obligation or expectation but just because, that right there is the art of the gift.

Life changing habits: Let go of expectations

This used to be one of my worst habits.

I’d do this thing where I’d place a lot of expectations on people that left no room for humanness and left me feeling disappointed.

Once I realised that I did this I started making a conscious effort to stop. I’ve learnt how to catch myself in the act and it is such a blessing.  It means I’m much less bothered by what people do.

Letting go of expectation has made some relationships a lot easier. It has also helped me clarify that in some cases I’m more invested than the other person and that we should probably just part ways.

It’s also about balance. For example, expecting a friend to make time to see you realistic but if you’re always expecting your friend to be free and getting upset or annoyed when they’re busy, you might want to reassess your expectations.

It’s a two way thing

When someone doesn’t want what you’re offering.

In a post called generous projection, I wrote about how when people try to help, they might just be projecting. I wrote it with a focus on the receiver but what about when you’re the one trying to help.

We often say things like I’m here if you wanna talk etc with the expectation that the other person will want to talk to us. We might even get frustrated if they don’t, but you have to remember it’s really not about you.

When you make someone an offer it might be useful to remember that they don’t have to accept.

Being professional and moving the benchmark

When you’re a kid you think that 21 is grown up. You think that by that age you’ll have everything figured out, that you’ll have met your life partner and that you’ll suddenly be this proper adult with a career…

But then you get to that age and you don’t quite feel how you thought you would.

Is this what its like to be an adult?

That’s the kind of question you ponder regularly. You might even have a professional job in a fancy office but you still feel like a kid in a classroom. But you have colleagues, deadlines, meetings, projects, clients and a work phone with a company branded case. You have all that yet you still feel like you’re playing dress-up and pretending to be professional.

Perhaps some would refer to this as imposter syndrome but you can call it whatever you want really. Often the only way to cure this feeling/mindset is to tell yourself that it will go once you achieve a particular goal. Once you gain accreditation in your field or lead a project.

But moving the benchmark probably won’t work because it’s a mind thing not a physical thing. It’s about how you feel about yourself and your ability.

My advice would be (to quote Sinek) start with why. Why do you feel that way about yourself? Once you understand that, it’s just a case of implementing a new mindset.