How life changes if you stop expecting things to happen

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In one of her recent articles, ’How to let miracles happen in your life, or life without expectations’, author of self-help training courses Evgeniya Medvedeva considers the importance of setting your mind free from constant expectations, and what the results of this can be.

We reproduce some of her thoughts here, in the hope that they might contribute to your understanding of how to lead a fulfilling, joy-filled life free from needless complications and worries.

’I’ve broken my habit of constantly expecting things to happen… And at that moment I felt relieved, like I’d just started actually living my life instead of thinking how to live it. I’ve stopped expecting anything from myself…Until then I lived according to the extremely harmful expectation that I was just about to reach my full potential — that I would become so-and-so, write a hundred articles or, even better, ten books, would create something wonderful and so on and so forth.

I’ve stopped expecting any results from myself. I’ve stopped expecting anything from others — that they will appreciate me, will do something for me, will be responsible or kind to me…I’ve stopped expecting things from my partner — that they will suddenly come to understand me and do as I please…

I’ve stopped expecting that more and more money will appear, having accepted the amount I already have. I’ve stopped expecting things from life and demanding that life give me something…Until this point I felt unfairly excluded from its joys — like I try so hard while others have better lives and receive more without doing anything.

Also, I’ve stopped expecting that tomorrow everything will be fine and that one day there will come a point when I won’t have any more problems. The part of me which is naïve and childish always wanted peace and tranquillity. This was until the adult in me realised that peace and tranquillity come from the inside rather than from the external absence of things to do or problems to solve.

Overall, I’ve stopped expecting anything at all…It really doesn’t matter to me what happens next. I used to think that it was essential to make sure that only good things happen, that everything has to be perfect. At that time, I had a fear of dealing with something I wouldn’t be able to cope with…I let go of expectations about the future, having told myself: “What will be, will be. Everything will work out for the best.”

Of course, I have some plans that I want to implement but I’ve realised that they are laughable compared to the opportunities life has in store for me.

Expectations concentrate your energy on one thing at a time, or at most on a few possible options — as a rule, these tend to be the things already set in concrete in your mind. They keep your energy away from moving forward, and they prevent your life away from bringing you the very best…And the best things are, as a rule, those things that you don’t expect at all.

I had permanent expectations, and the result was that in my mind there was a series of events that needed to happen — so my brain worked hard to follow this plan, and God forbid I miss something.

The question ’How?’ was coming across my mind all the time: ’How? How? How?’
How to achieve my plans? The interesting thing is that I had no answers to this question. and I got most of them when I didn’t think about ’how’ at all. After all, I wanted to know everything beforehand, but that never happens.

Before starting to do something I used to feel the need to get through a preparatory process, which was very long and painful. Sometimes it took so long that I was too worn out to do anything in the end. I was investing a lot of time into this process; so much time that I didn’t want to do anything else afterwards.

It’s like when you hit the books before an exam — by the time you take the actual exam, you’re too worn out to do your best. Being very tired of this ’straight-A student’ mindset, I allowed the revolution to happen inside me:

Let it happens as it happens…Oh my goodness, I felt so relieved at that moment — it didn’t matter ’how’ anymore… I calmed down straight away. It will be as it will be…

Since then, I can honestly say that miracles have occurred in my life:

  1. I’ve started understanding myself better and new ideas are coming to me. I’ve started to heed my thoughts and realised that I can implement my ideas even when I don’t know how to. I just went forward and worked out what I needed to do in the process.
  2. I’ve started to achieve many more things than I did earlier; in complete contrast to the way I used to prepare for actions and projects first and then bailed, resulting in very little getting done. I was surprised, too, to find that I achieve much better results now than I used to.
  3. I’ve started to ask for things I need at the moment when they’re needed, and I’ve given up demanding things I don’t need, without expecting others to understand.
  4. I have a lot of things going on at the moment, to the extent that I can barely keep up — I just have so many things to do! Moreover, I now manage to do everything with minimal effort. In addition, I’ve started to determine how and when important things happen myself, instead of just reacting to the things that happen to me.
  5. I’ve started meeting lots of interesting people. I’m surprised that I’m getting acquainted with new people everywhere — in the street, in the supermarket or in the elevator — and at the same time I never think about ’How to become acquainted with [x]?’ anymore.
  6. How many times have I felt recently that I’ve been in the right place at the right time! Individual events started to form a series of events and led me to the things I really needed at that exact moment.
  7. This may sound trivial, but the size of my average supermarket shop has fallen more or less by half. I used to buy so many things, and it was never enough enough. Now I buy far fewer, but higher quality products. Being more rational and having less of a need for ’things’, I’m sure, is in some way connected to my new frame of mind.

Many things came into my life by themselves. I’ve even achieved certain things and ideas which earlier on didn’t work out, despite my ardent desire for them to do so. I never used to appreciate the things that life had in store for me at that moment, and instead but complained that life was so-so, that the world didn’t care about me and gave me nothing.But the truth is that I just didn’t notice any of its gifts, because I was expecting something good to happen all the time and trying too hard to find an answer the eternal question “How?”

Everything turned out to be way simpler than I ever thought it was: thanks to my decision to accept my lack of control over and understanding of how things will happen or turn out, I have managed to let go of all my expectations, instead I now simply believe that things will work out for the best. I’ve started to feel life flow, how it fluctuates, comprehend its lack of permanence, and to respond to things that life has in store for me right now.’



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