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Sunday, December 5, 2010

What do you expect? By Tamsen McMahon

Tamsen McMahon, Director of Digital and Strategic Initiatives at Sametz Blackstone Associates, a Boston-based brand strategy firm, writes a post that is especially appropriate for this season. At this time of reflection, it is important for us to realize our ability to control how we see the world, how we see our work and how we see ourselves. Janet

Ah, expectations.  We have them.  We set them.  We manage them.

But they’re really just little time bombs of judgment, ticking away, waiting to explode.

You can’t “set” others expectations (though we try to all the time).  People set their own expectations.  Nor can you manage others’ expectations, even if they try to convince you that it’s somehow your responsibility to manage their thoughts.

There’s only one of you; there’s millions of them.

The only person you can control? You.
The only expectations you can set? Yours.
The only expectations you can manage? Again, Yours.

So the only real option is to stay your own course, even if that course changes over time, as it inevitably will.   The reactions we hear from others (the surprise, the dreaded “disappointment,” the vitriol) are their own resistance to change, or their frustration that what they thought they understood was not, in fact, the case.

We can only be responsible for our actions. Not the reactions of others.

Living up to the expectations of the masses is a fool’s errand. It’s hard enough to live with our own.

Doesn't knowing that you are in control of how you respond give you a tremendous sense of freedom?

1 comment:

  1. This is so true. Once we realize that we are the ones in control, we can make choices based on our own needs.