Managing Expectations

Everyone goes through times when they feel pressure to achieve certain goals, behave in a particular manner or even look a certain way. These expectations might have a positive influence and can challenge or motivate you to do your best. However, unrealistic expectations might not be helpful and could have a negative impact on your thoughts, feelings and behaviour.

Where do expectations come from?

You: Sometimes the expectations you put on yourself can be the most unrealistic and hardest to meet

Family: Family expectations can vary and might include how you behave or dress, what sort of person you can date, your grades or what sort of career you choose

Peers: Sometimes your friends or peers might significantly influence you and expect you to dress or behave in a certain way

School: Your school or teachers may expect you to get high grades

Teammates: You might experience pressure from your teammates to participate and do well. They may also expect you to do well regardless of how much time spent in practice

Work: Some managers or employers might set unrealistic goals and targets for your work performance

Society: Sometimes society, through media and advertising, expects you to behave in certain ways or buy certain products.

Managing expectations

Managing your expectations is the key to happiness. We tend to believe that the way we treat others will be the way we are treated in return. Unfortunately this does not always happen. Do not expect a certain result from any given situations. Go into an experience with an open mind. Therefore you can;

  • Talk to someone outside the situation
  • Talk to the person setting the expectations.
  • Challenge and reset your expectations.
  • Have a variety of options for the future
  • Chill out
  • Express your feelings
  • Look after yourself


Learn how to manage your expectations and this will be the beginning of happiness in your life.



Author: John Muhaise-Bikalemesa,
Director Big Drum Advisory Services,