Having No Expectations is a Great Start

Kyle Reed // @kylereed

I have huge expectations for everything.

I am the guy that can run through a situation from start to end in less time then it takes for you to read this. It could be a simple idea, response to an inquiry, or even a non verbal communication that someone has given me, I just seem to turn expectations into a session of daydreaming about the future.

What I am learning is that my expectations get me in real trouble. Not only are they always ridiculous, they never come true. There have been several times when I have gotten upset with people because they did not meet my unfair expectation of them.

There have been several times where I have been frustrated with myself because I set high expectations on my life and ideas and they have not been met.

The interesting thing about expectations is that if you have none you are set up for success. Thats right, if you can have no expectations then you will always succeed. Which is crazy, because we all have expectations, but I think if we can start to be realistic instead of expecting, things might be different.

Case in point. Musicians that seem to have great success do no start out with the hopes that they will be huge. My favorite example, the guy from Owl City, he set out to make music, not a million fans. Bloggers that set out to have thousands of followers usually quit after 2 months because they only have 10. It just seems that we let expectations of what others have done dictate what we deem as being successful.

As for me, I am dropping my expectations.


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Kyle Reed

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I create websites, conversations, and ideas. Advocate for the 20 somethings. Looking to connect everyone to a mentor. Married to my best friend, Ginny. I like my coffee black and my dog Jack. I currently live in Nashville and work at Sony Music/Provident in Nashville
  • http://www.jcwert.com Jason

    It’s amazing how expectations can suck the joy out of things that until you became “serious” about it were so much fun…

    • http://thoughtsaboutnothing.com Kyle Reed

      And it is even harder when you have others who have expectations that do not match your own…that is tough as well.

  • http://theperkinsblog.net Michael

    For blogging, I have no expectations. But I have to remind myself not to have any.

    For life…I do have them. I understand what you are saying, because it is hard to be let down or as Jason said it can suck the fun out of it.

    Maybe anticipating is better???

    Just thinking out load bro.

    • http://thoughtsaboutnothing.com Kyle Reed

      Well, but anticipation gets me in trouble as well.
      It really stems out of conversations I have with people and how I have already ran the situation 3 years down the road before we have even talk for 20 minutes about the future.
      I just get my hopes up when I talk about the future and opportunities and have expectations of follow through. That is where I struggle.

      • http://theperkinsblog.net Michael

        I can understand that. I’ve been let down too, but the possibilities excite me.

        Man you’ve really got me thinking.

        • http://thoughtsaboutnothing.com Kyle Reed

          It always seems the possibilities can be greater then the reality, but it is exciting to dream.

          • http://theperkinsblog.net Michael

            It is man. My favorite two of my favorite scriptures are Joshua 3:5 and Habakkuk 1:5.

            I think those explain why I eagerly expect.

  • http://www.mohan37.com mo

    Hah great example about blogging. People are like that about finding girlfriends too.

    I.think expectations are important to have – just realistic ones, even if they are challenging. But your point is well-taken.

    • http://thoughtsaboutnothing.com Kyle Reed

      How do you develop realistic expectations? That is where I struggle.

  • shellie (baylormum)

    It’s been a while since I acted all motherly on you!!

    What I’ve learned about expectations in the past 3 years is that they usually lead to, not only frustration, but resentment. Which either deflates my self-esteem or ticks me off that whomever I expected something out of, didn’t get ‘er done.

    I lived most of my life living my life the way I thought my mother wanted me to live it. Always thinking of her unattainable expectations of me. Until I numbed her voice with drugs. I am not blaming her for my fall into addiction! Not at all. But, my recovery is all mine. No one else’s. I no longer looked at my life through my mother’s eyes. What a difference changing your perspective can have on how life looks!! I can think on my own. Make choices without fear of some negative remark. Set goals instead expectations. It causes me less grief! Know my limitations. Then when I go beyond them it is so much more sweet!

    • http://thoughtsaboutnothing.com Kyle Reed

      I love when you get all motherly :)

  • http://manofdepravity.com Tyler

    I do truly believe that we should have God sized expectations of what he can do. But this is a great point Kyle. In fact I think it would help us be better stewards if we had no expectations, because it would help us come into a role or situation with open hands. Anytime we have big expectations we usually try to control more ourselves.

    • http://thoughtsaboutnothing.com Kyle Reed

      Exactly, and what I am finding is that my expectations are well my expectations. Honestly, most of the time I have a hard time with what God has planned. I think that is the big issue, my expectations do not always match up with Gods

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  • http://www.adamlehman.us Adam Lehman

    Dang. I’m reminded of a “failed” non-profit i started to attempt to build. I thought I’d be huge and raking in millions for charity and whatnot.

    Focused on the crowd instead of the mission.


    • http://thoughtsaboutnothing.com Kyle Reed

      exactly, that is a great point.
      I really think that we tend to focus on what it could be without ever making it something