I’ve heard the phrase ‘no expectations, no disappointments’ so many times, but never really thought too much into it, it’s one of those things people say and you just nod along to. However, the other day at dinner my parents and I were talking about some of the best memories we’ve made in our lives so far and I noticed that a recurring theme to all my favourite memories is that I didn’t expect anything from them.
Let me explain.
When I look back at my time at University, first year in particular, I never look back on it fondly. I really didn’t enjoy first year and I think it’s partly due to the fact I had such huge expectations for University and how University life would be. My sister had started Uni in Newcastle just the year before and was having an amazing time, so I expected my time in Southampton to be just like hers, and unsurprisingly, it wasn’t. Compare that to how I feel when I look back on my semester aborad to Australia, I had the best time. I know what you’re thinking, it’s Australia, obvs it was going to be amazing. But I think the reason I had such an unreal time is that I literally had 0 expectations of how it was going to be. I didnt know anyone close to me that had done a semester abroad and I also don’t think I ever got the chance to overthink how great it would be because the excitement was constantly drowned out by the nerves of flying to the other side of the world! Going to Aus then ended up being the best 6 months of my life. No questions asked.
When I was in Aus my friend and I went on a trip to Tasmania, we booked it on a whim as a way to celebrate the end of our exams. After we booked it I didn’t really think about it because I was too busy revising (lol). The time came around for us to go and I can hand on heart say that one of the days in Tasmania was the best day of my life. My friend and I had barely done any research or Googled any of the places we were going to be go to, we just went with the flow. We’d get to these absolutely stunning places and had 0 expectation of what it was going to be like and then were completely blown away every. single. time. The one in particular that stood out for me the most was when we hiked for sunrise at Wineglass Bay, it was unreal!
When you see beautiful pictures of places from peoples travels they elicit a certian feeling, making you feel a certian way – then when you get the chance to go to that place you expect to feel the same way as the picture made you feel, and if you don’t I find it can almost be underwhelming. I’m not saying using your imagination is bad, but sometimes it definitely sets the bar a little too high. I think thats what made Tasmania so special, there was no bar.
Compare that to the East Coast road trip I went on, which was obviously amazing, but before going I knew it was going to be amazing. Everyone always tells you how unreal travelling the East Coast is – which it was – but sets your expectations! Compare that to Tasmania, that no one talks about or even visits Tassie meaning its not overhyped and it went on to completely surpass any expectations I had!
I know all the things I’ve spoken about above are quite significant things to happen in my life, but the same can be said about mundane events to. Think about a time you’ve been invited to something last minute, you have no time to think about it too much, you potentially don’t even want to go but more often than not it is much better than expected and surpasses your expectations! Compare that to dates that have been in the diary for a long time that you build up in your head about how fun they’re going to be, not to be negative but I find they always end up under delivering, or potentially disappointing (maybe that’s just me though).
The same thinking can be applied to other things as well though, such as people, situational outcomes, or how you expect to feel when you reach a certian goal. It’s especially a problem around weight loss, people (women specifically) expect they’re going to be happy once they’ve losy weight, and when they lose weight and aren’t happy they’re disappointed – and that’s because losing weight won’t make you happy, but being comfortable and acceptance will – but that is a whole other post.
So, what do you think about the phrase no expectations no disappointments? What’s been your unexpectedly favourite day? Please share!
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