Expectations: The Guilt of Not Meeting Them

New Blog: The guilt of Not Meeting Expectations from the 'Things I used to Think, Feel and Do before I saw What I see now' library from Sarie Taylor

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Things I used to think, feel and do before I saw what I see now.

We all set expectations of ourselves: how the day will go, how the week will go, how the year will go, and even the decade!

The other morning I woke up with expectations of the day...
...what I would be doing
...where I would be going
...who I would be seeing
...what I should be doing
...what I'd get done
...what we'd eat...

and things were just not going to plan.

It all started when we set off to go somewhere and part of the way there, I realised I forgot to take nappies (or diapers for my US readers!) for my toddler.

I quickly had an expectation: "it'll be fine, she never normally needs a change at this time of day".. but of course, she DID need to be changed - as soon as we arrived at our destination!

I had to go up to a random stranger and ask if there's any chance I could 'steal' a nappy (they're not really the type of things you can borrow, are they?). It was all a bit embarrassing and it was at that point that I got really frustrated with myself.

What I realised in a moment of reflection is that I was becoming frustrated because I was measuring myself against my own expectations.

Here's what happened:

As soon as I let go of all my expectations, I felt very different!

I used to feel like I can't let go of my expectations because I'd feel guilty if I don't meet my expectations.

Guilt is something that's often misunderstood.

I used to see the feeling of guilt as an indicator that I need to do better.
It was as if the universe was sending me a signal to say "must do better, Sarie!".

Yet now that I understand that we're only ever feeling our thoughts, I know that those feelings of guilt come from thoughts of inadequacy or thoughts of doing well enough.

They are internal thoughts.
They are thoughts that we're paying attention to instead of letting pass.
They're not facts, their not truths, they're just thoughts.

Here's what I want you to know:
When you feel guilt, that feeling of guilt is nothing more or less than a signal or indication that your thinking is off - that you're being too harsh on yourself: you're being judgemental and critical of yourself.

I now see guilt as a lovely warning sign to lower our expectations of ourselves.

What about you?

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Are we overcomplicating mental health? 

The continuous spiral of talking about mental illness and neglecting to discuss mental health that’s within us all! 

Finding herself in a mental hospital for a month aged 22, her worst fears of going crazy had come true! Sarie truly believed she was broken for many years, and now sees that this was in part due to massively over complicating what it meant be a human being. After a long period of exploring and training as a psychotherapist, still burning out every 18 months for another ten years, Sarie finally found the answer, and now shares the surprising simplicity of it all to help others get the same relief. 

Sarie has trained as a transactional analysis psychotherapist, as well as working and training in many other therapeutic disciplines, such as NLP, CBT, DBT and hypnotherapy. Sarie is also an author, celebrity coach and therapist, working with thousands of people a year, of all ages, all over the world. Her main aim is to help them really see the simplicity and beauty behind human nature, getting out of their heads and into their lives, being able to see that the inside out nature of life really is a gift. This removes limitations and stories they may hold about themselves, and as a result finding an ease and contentment in life they often never knew was possible. 
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