You have days when you feel that you’re not good enough. You also have days where you feel guilt and have a negative attitude because you’ve made some bad choices. Is it possible that unrealistic expectations are destroying your journey through life?

It’s hard to keep up with all the expectations placed on you by society and yourself. Society expects you to be the perfect parent, a great worker, a superb daughter/son, and an outstanding member of your community. When you add it all together, it equates to one big impossibility.

Twenty Unrealistic Expectations You Must Let Go

You’re a human being who will make mistakes, and you can’t beat yourself up each time you stumble and fall. Guess what? Your journey through life is all your own, and you can make it more enjoyable by letting go of some of these unrealistic expectations that are holding you back.


1. Expectations of Perfection

You’re not going to be perfect no matter how hard you try. There’s never been a person on this earth who has been given an award for perfection. Even the wealthiest person on this planet still makes mistakes every day, but it’s learning what to do with those mistakes that counts.

2. Conflict is Avoidable

If you’re one of the people that go out of your way to avoid conflict, you’re avoiding the inevitable. Competition is all around you, and there’s no escaping it.

You can tactfully stand up for yourself and learn to move on without making a big issue of it. If you tower in avoidance to keep conflict to a minimum, then you’re not taking up for yourself.

3. Expectations That Life Should be Fair

Life is never fair, nor will it ever be. Good and bad things happen to everybody, though sometimes it seems like you’re coming up with the short end of the stick. Remember, just because you see someone else in their excellent season doesn’t mean they haven’t gone through a horrible one in the past.

4. Making Money is Your Goal on Earth

If you think that the only reason you are here on earth is to work and make money, then you’ve lost sight of the big picture. Author Linda Howe wrote a book entitled “INSPIRED MANIFESTING: Elevate Your Energy & Ignite Your Dreams.” The purpose of this writing is to help you understand why you’re here for such a time as this.

You have a dream inside you that’s waiting for you to bring to fruition. You have a unique offering that you’re supposed to share with the world, and you need to tap into what this gift is to contribute, according to Fire It Up With CJ.

5. Everyone Will See Your Point of View and Agree

In a perfect world, everyone would understand your opinions and agree with them. However, this is one of the unrealistic expectations people wrestle with. It would be a boring planet if everyone saw things that same and agreed.

6. College is The Ticket to Financial Freedom

Setting expectations for yourself like this is dangerous. Many people believe that a big-paying job will fall into their lap if they go to college. It does happen for some people that way, but you still need to work your way to the top.

Ask one of the tens of thousands of lawyers who start barely making enough to cover their student loan payments. Your goal setting better include a long climb to the top after school, as you still have so much to learn.

7. Trying to Keep the Perfect Home (One of the most unreasonable expectations)

Who cares if your house isn’t perfect and there aren’t vacuum track marks on the carpet? If there’s a dirty dish or two in the sink, let it go till tomorrow. Spend your time making memories and not keeping a museum.

Now you don’t want your house to become unsanitary, but it’s okay if things are unkempt occasionally; after all, you do live there.

8. You Should Have No Problems

You’re going to have problems. Even if you’re the most humanitarian person with tons of money in the bank, you’ll still have issues. Hollywood stars are prime examples that fame and fortune don’t erase your troubles.

9. Expectations That Opportunities Will Fall into Your Lap

Nope! You’re going to have to work for everything that you do. Even if your parents or a friend handed you a job on a silver platter, you’re still going to be required to work long and hard to keep it. There’s no such thing in life as a free lunch.

10. Fairytales Exist

Stop watching all the fairytale movies and realize that the girl doesn’t always get her prince, and if she does, he isn’t always prince charming. One of the most significant unrealistic expectations you can set on yourself is thinking that your love life should resemble one of these movies.

Real-life doesn’t work that way, but you can find someone who completes you and makes you happy. Yes, you might have to kiss a few “frogs” to find your soulmate.


11. Catastrophic Expectations; Thinking Failure is Imminent

If you think that you’re going to fail when you set out to do something, you will forget. Stop thinking so negatively, as it’s only going to hinder your success.

12. Folks Know What You Want

Do you think that people can read your mind? How will they know what you want if you don’t tell them? When it comes to relationships, it’s essential to learn that people need effective communication to make things work.

13. Your Children Are Angels (You’re casting unfair expectations onto them!)

No kid will be an angel, and if you put these expectations on them, you’re asking for trouble. To be a good parent, you must allow them room for failure, as this is how they grow and learn.

14. Material Things Bring Happiness

Keeping up with your relatives and family members on material possessions will not make you happy. Many people lie in bed at night worried about paying for all their indulgent purchases. According to Explore Health, many folks with money troubles have a higher rate of depression and anxiety, so is it worth trying to put on a facade?

15. Successes Come Without Failure

Milton Hershey is a prime example of a great man in history who fell many times before success. According to Biography, Hershey filed for bankruptcy three times before making his candy business a success. Would you keep trying so hard?

You’re going to make mistakes, and things will not be perfect, but you must try again. Who knows, the next time might be the charm?

16. Trying to Make Everyone Like You

Another big unrealistic expectation is thinking that everyone will like you. Sometimes people’s personalities don’t mesh, and there will always be those who don’t see things your way. It’s not possible for every single person in your vicinity to like you, so stop trying to please everyone.

17. Things Will Go Your Way

Wouldn’t it be nice if you dictated your day, and everything went as planned? Sadly, you’ve got to be flexible and be open to changes because things are constantly moving and shifting.

18. You Can Change People

Why do so many couples get together with the thought that they can change one another? If your partner has some bad quirks, the chances are that they will still have them ten years from now. It’s a significant unrealistic expectation to think that you can change people and make them more suitable to your liking.

19. You Must Change Your Expectations and Standards to Fit In

Speaking of change, you don’t have to change one thing about yourself to fit in. Your true friends will like you for who and what you are, and if they ask you to change, then they’re not truly a friend. Unless you have horrible habits like lying or stealing, you don’t need to alter yourself to appease others.

20. Feeling Entitled

Though they say the best things in life are free, you must remember that you get what you pay for. How many times have you bought the less expensive product thinking it was a good deal, only to find out that it wasn’t? One thing that comes to mind is dish detergent.

That dollar bottle of detergent seems like an excellent budget offering, especially if money is tight. However, when you need to use half the bottle to get the suds of the name brand, you find that it wasn’t such a money saver. Life is very similar, as sometimes you got to pay a little more, but the end is worth it.


Final Thoughts on Letting Go of Unrealistic Expectations

Dr. Miranda Morris from Psych Central believes that unrealistic expectations are part of the human experience, but you need to adjust your outlook. Stop being so harsh on yourself and those around you, as it causes you unnecessary anxiety and can lead to depression. Learn to live in the moment and take things as they come and stop crying over failures and embrace these catastrophes that were meant to teach you.