Would you like to be happier? Get rid of your unrealistic expectations. Most of our unpleasant experiences are a result of having an expectation that is not realistic. We want something to be so, even though in our heart of hearts, we know that the thing wished for will not occur.
This is true of our interpersonal exchanges. We want to hear from someone we know by experience we are unlikely to hear from.
We want someone to be pleasant and understanding when history tells us they will not be.
We want someone to remember as special a particular day, knowing they likely will not.
It is not events which make us unhappy. It is our unreasonable expectation that things will unfold as we want them to occur. This is true when it comes to wanting others to feel as we feel about important issues in life, whether those issues are religious, political, social or personal.
Perhaps the most unrealistic expectation most people hold is that others should agree with them on a wide variety of such issues. When you expect others do think as you think, to do as you would do, you're setting yourself up for aggravation. Try not expecting agreement, since that is often likely.
The key to a happy life is to have your own expectations regarding how you will be, but not expect others to share every facet of every belief you hold. It's true whether the topic is religion, politics, or whether arriving fashionably late is rude or cool.
When you let go of believing your expectations, beliefs and practices should be adopted by others, you clear the way for more happiness in your own life.
People have firm beliefs about most matters of importance by the time they are age thirty. They know what they believe, and many do not understand friends and relatives who seek to impose beliefs and modes of behavior upon them. This means by having unrealistic expectations of such others, you are not only disappointing yourself constantly with chagrin at having your choices rejected, you are also irritating others who feel just as righteous about their personal beliefs as you do.
It is best to let go of the notion that whatever you believe about life's important issues should be believed by others. Wrapping your beliefs in "but this is God's will" or "but my position is right" will only dig deeper the hole of unhappiness that others reject your beliefs.
Jesus himself didn't say to hound others. He instructed his followers to say what they had to say, then shake the dust off their feet and get on down the road. That's a good lesson.
Copyright 2018, Jim "Pappy" Moore, all rights reserved.