Recently, and not for the first time, someone said to me, "Always expect the worst and you will never be disappointed." That is a heck of a statement, isn't it? I know that they meant well and what they were really saying is that they hoped that I could avoid the pain so often associated with disappointment.
The fact is that there are many people who approach life from this perspective and although there is an element of truth to it, it is not a truth that I want to live by.
I always hope for and expect the best. If things don’t work out as I had originally hoped or expected, than I figure that there must be reason for it and look to learn from the event itself. Am I ever disappointed? Sure. But disappointments are one of the ways we learn and one of life’s ways of teaching us.’ When we are able to maintain a perspective of learning from all of life’s events, then we can see the value in each of our disappointments too.
“Always expecting the worst” deprives one of the opportunity to learn. If one expects the worst, then what is to be gained from not getting it? Nothing.
When one expects the worst, they are also deprived of another opportunity and that is the opportunity for “HOPE”. “Hope” may be one of the best experiences available to us in life. It is what dreams are made of. It is what lands people on the moon and cures diseases and ends wars. It is a driving force that shapes lives, builds futures and makes our world a better place. “Hope” is what happy people have and do.
Hope encourages us. Expecting the worst does not. Hope energizes us. Expecting the worst does not. Hope uplifts us and the people around us. Expecting the worst does not.
Disappointment teaches, builds character and is quite often the best thing that could happen to us. Expecting disappointment or expecting the worst does not offer these benefits.
I certainly understand why people hate to be disappointed. But you know what may be worse than being disappointed? Missing any opportunity for hope and learning that life has to offer.
Putting it another way, “always expecting the worst” may be one of the worst things you could do.
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