Realistic Expectations Support Imperfection
If you’ve ever had a big dream or goal, you probably know that having realistic expectations about obtaining that goal really helps you in getting there. This is because when we expect imperfections in the process, we aren’t surprised when they happen, and we can deal with them and move forward more quickly and easily. This increase in momentum will often be enough to carry you through the more trying times when you may have quit altogether!
Imperfection in any process is to be anticipated. So many things can pop up unexpectedly – being able to bounce back with a plan of action without losing momentum is a skill that is precious and not all that common. Setting realistic expectations upfront can pave the way for an easier ride all the way to the end goal.
When you begin any project or process with the expectation of immediate perfection, you set yourself up for disaster and disappointment. Nothing in life is perfect, and when have you known anyone to go straight from point A to point B without some deviation in the route. So expecting the roadblocks helps soften that blow when they do happen.
This deviation can manifest itself in the form of a bad day when you don’t get much accomplished, a sick child or injury that happens suddenly, or any number of other unexpected road blocks. One can view these negatively and let them color your reactions, or they can be viewed positively as character-building lessons!
Being realistically optimistic about a process helps the momentum of the process. We’ve all experienced having a wrench thrown into our plans and how that can stop us from moving forward – sometimes indefinitely. The key is to accept the imperfection, in whatever form it has taken, and then set to getting right back on track again. Doing this teaches us resilience, and increases our problem-solving abilities. It also indirectly helps those around us by allowing them to see how a problem can be dealt with positively, even when it knocks us for a loop.
By allowing yourself to be governed by unrealistic expectations – and the expectation of perfection – you steal from yourself the ability to enjoy and learn from the process. And the process, and progress, to any goal is where the true fulfillment lies. Slow down, do the best you can in all areas, and relish in the journey, not the destination.