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Tempering Expectations

Here is a definition of the word “EXPECTATION”: a strong belief that something will happen or be the case in the future.

We all have “expectations” covering many different aspects of our lives and here are some examples:

  • How well our financial portfolios will perform in our investments
  • How well our favorite sports teams will do in the new season
  • How our children’s grades will appear on their report cards
  • How much fun we will have during an upcoming vacation

This list can be expanded to many other “expectations” we have of things and people in our lives.

We will usually feel an element of disappointment if our expectations are not met.  The severity of this disappointment can range from a mild one, such as going to a restaurant and your meal is not as good as expected or a much more intense despondency such as going to a doctor for a problem thinking the issue is minor and then finding out something life-threatening is occurring.

A very intense reaction when expectations are not met can lead to what I refer to as the “I GIVE UP” mentality.  As an example, if we expected our favorite football team to compete for a Superbowl appearance this year and they perform very badly in the first few games, we may completely give up on the season and spend our Sundays doing something other than watching and rooting for our team.

Now, to the weight control arena:  It is important for us to NOT set unrealistic expectations for rate of weight loss.  There are many factors that play roles in the speed of weight loss including:

  • Age/speed of metabolism/gender
  • The starting weight (much heavier people will lose weight quicker than lesser weighing people)
  • Underlying medical conditions
  • Medications being taken
  • Other responsibilities that detract from being able to focus lots of time on weight loss efforts

If we set our expectations too high and these are not met, that “I Give Up” mentality can set in and at that point, all hope is lost in eventually getting to the healthier/happier weight we strive for.

So, the point of this entry:  Temper your expectations for rate of weight loss so as NOT to allow disappointment to set in.  By doing so, hopefully you will NOT get into the “I GIVE UP” mode and your efforts will continue.

Here is the song “EXPECTATIONS” from Magic!

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