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Brain Candy 35 Expectations Create Resentment

Yesterday I was on court for a first lesson with a new client. He like many people are wired for anger. For quite a few out there, they have a predisposition to react to and express anger for anything that disappoints them. The reason most commonly is that they have expectations. They expect themselves to perform. Children on the other hand might not yet be wired this way, but they can be. Most kids I see can miss 7 shots, make the 8th and celebrate. Most adults I see can rally 5 or more shots, which would make it a pretty good rally, but if they miss, then they say ‘shit’. Part of this wiring is created by the notion of ‘consistency’. Because every single missed shot is a threat to consistency, even if you have made that same shot nine times for a winner, and the 10th one missed by an inch. There is a failure to recognize the risk:reward ratio in many people.

I asked my student why he reacted in anger, and he told me it was because he had ‘expectations of success’. So I shared with him that something a student taught me: Expectations create resentment. I also replied, “What you are telling me is that you want to make yourself miserable?” He seemed to think that it was ok, if he wasn’t meeting expectations. There is not future in that, yet people survive for a while in that cycle, and their games are not true recreation for them, in fact they become additional sources of stress and distress. It’s a great idea to break that pattern and play for enjoyment.

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