Why letting go of expectations helps you grow.

It is my birthday today and it may have taken thirty six years but this Libran girl finally found her balance in life. Ironically, it came from letting go of all the expectations that I clung to for external stability. During the years when I frantically micro managed all aspects of my life, I would not have imagined my current ability to experience inner peace and joy amidst chaotic, unpredictable and the most challenging circumstances. Detaching my joy from external circumstances or labels enabled me to nurture the emotional qualities that make it easier to encounter  disappointment. This ability to feel worthy and at peace when outcomes do not unfold as expected constantly offers new  wisdom that subsequently enriches my creative potential. So today, my birthday wish for everyone to also discover the love, abundance and purpose that results from abandoning the expectations of who we must be, so that we can grow into our highest self and potential.

Expectations are self depleting.

I now understand that being attached to my prior expectations of validation, perfection and control undermined my conscious awareness of my intrinsic worth. Like many people, I subconsciously believed that I wasn’t as valuable if a desired outcome didn’t manifest, hence there was always an uncharted part of myself that I was fleeing from. For example, if didn’t get the grade I wanted, I first questioned my intelligence instead of simply resigning to apply more effort without criticizing myself. I took for granted that a self defeating dialogue that proceeded my disappointments actually hindered my capacity to sustain the momentum of my goals. In hindsight, the self critical version of myself was not courageous enough to rise to the occasion of thriving amidst challenges. Yet, there I was putting one foot in front the other, constantly reacting to appease every unmet expectation convinced that it was surely leading towards greater abundance and fulfillment. Unfortunately, the only destination that chasing external expectations lead to is internal unworthiness, distress and a repeated cycle of familiar woes.

Breaking the cycle of expectations.

We will never truly arrive at our desired fulfillment and abundance while chasing  validation, perfection control or certainty, etc,.  Pursuing those expectations externally prevents us from cultivating them internally and taking ownership of our happiness and life. Rather, I unknowingly lowered the bar of what it took to feel validated or perfect each time I emerged from my disappointments until I was gradually barricaded within my comfort zone with diminished fulfillment. This is that phase of limbo where many of us feel stuck or stifled in life because our subconscious attachment to our expectations blinds us to greater possibilities for expansion, while our authentic self is eagerly tugging at our soul to be freed. Our truest self is the ability to feel worthy under all circumstances, which requires detaching our happiness from all external expectations that are not within our control. Doing so, subsequently enables us to nurture the emotional qualities (kindness, compassion, patience, trust, etc) that allow us to still love ourselves when life isn’t validating, perfect, certain etc. The ability to feel worthy during undesirable outcomes makes us unafraid of unpredictable outcomes,  thus we remain motivated and inspired during set backs. Letting go of perfection has resulted in being more compassionate with myself, which in turn makes me less fearful of imperfect outcomes. Rather, the commitment to accept ourselves as unconditionally worthy eliminates the notion of failure all together and we simply get to be whatever it takes to grow into the size of our dreams. 

The journey to our authentic self begins by responding to every episode of emotional discontent in a manner that detaches our inner peace and joy from the particular unmet expectation. This is how we gain the wisdom of who we truly are and what we are capable of beyond external influences. 

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