Letting Go of Others’ Expectations

People have opinions like they have armpits – some smell sweet and some stinky.

And people love to share them. Opinions, not armpits (thankfully).

However, just because someone tells you their opinion – sweet or stinky – doesn’t mean it’s really something you should consider.

Let’s break it down a bit. An opinion is actually a judgment. When a person decides you should do something or not do it, they are judging where you’ve come from, where you are in your life, who you are, and what you are about to do. They are drawing their conclusion – opinion – based on their own perspective of your situation.

The other problem with judging is that people see that perspective based on their own lives. So, for instance, if you say you would like to give up your job in the law profession to start a career in singing / songwriting (like Chris Assaad did), the people around you are going to share their “opinion” based on whether or not THEY could give up being a lawyer to try to pursue singing. A small percentage of their opinion is actually based on you, your needs and wants, and what will make you happy. Again, it’s all from their perspective.

But let’s be real – how many times have both you and I sucuummed to the opinions of others and jumped full force into what they expected of us?

We bought it. Hook. Line. And Sinker.

We caved.

We gave in.

We let them talk us into it.

Or out of it…

We let them and their opinion run our lives.

Fast forward 2, 5, 10 years and where are you now? Living out others’ expectations of you and not listening to your calling, passions, or purpose, in most cases. You may even be unhappy, frustrated, or even worse, miserable. Yet, you keep going through the motions because you don’t know any different or have listened to everyone else around you for so long that you have forgotten what your own voice sounds like. You have forgotten to stop and evaluate, to listen, to learn. You have let their expectations grow and grow so high that you worry about their feelings far more than your own happiness or reaching your own vision and dreams for your life.

For some, they don’t even dream anymore. They merely exist. It’s sad.

If you are fortunate enough to hear that still, small voice, to see the light, to catch the glimpses of visions, to know that you know that you know there is more for you, you will come to realize first – there is no way to live up to everyone’s expectations (“You can please some of the people some of the time, but not all of the people all of the time.”) and second – the vision and life you are called to is greater than anything anyone else could ever give you, plan for you, or push you into.

You are called to more.

You are not made for a mediocre life.

You were made to thrive, excel, and shine brighter than the sun!

I feel like I’m preaching to the choir, but that’s only because as I work through this, too, I knew you must feel this in your life, as well. It’s time we all broke away from the molds that everyone else is placing us in and live outside the box. Are you ready to leave others’ expectations behind? Have you already begun your journey? If you feel so tied to expectations placed on you, what’s keeping you so connected? What are you concerned about if you let go to grow? Please share in the comments below. I read every single one of them! I love hearing the story of you!!


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JessBio200 Letting Go of Others ExpectationsJessica Stone is a serial entrepreneur and mom of 4 – 3 with special needs and a set of twins. Her daughter has an undiagnosed neuro-muscular condition that limits her mobility, and her twins are currently receiving therapy for sensory defensiveness, physical mobility, fine motor skills, and speech. She enjoys sharing what she has learned through her trials, experience, research, and tools that have helped her family with other parents who are looking for support, encouragement, and helpful information. Get her FREE gift to you, 30 Easy Snacks Your Kids Will Devour: Eating Healthy Never Got So Simple. Connect with Jess live today on Facebook!

Letting Go of Others’ Expectations

8 thoughts on “Letting Go of Others’ Expectations

  1. Loved this post Jessica. It’s something I was just talking about with my Shalom coach. We so often get “shoulded” to death that our dreams die or wither to lifelessness. How sad is that. Here’s too living fruitful lives that are a true and holy express of who God made us to be!

  2. Jessica, when I first heard the phrase “Thank you for sharing” I thought it was obnoxious and rude. But the more I let go of “they” (what they think, what they want, etc.), the more I had to find something to stop the incoming barrage of opinions or judgments. After trying so many nicer ways to say it, this turned out to be the one … sometimes completed as “Thanks for sharing your opinion; I’ll take it into consideration as I make my decision.” It really helped me stay on path for what I knew was waiting for me …

  3. Again, Jessica such an awesome and in-depth article. You touched a “sore” spot but testimonies have followed. I think the starting point is to “believe in yourself, in your vision and know that you will succeed. This helps to push people’s negative opinions to the back burner.
    I love the way you started your article.
    I continue to strive to exchange mediocrity for excellence regardless of the “noise in the market”

  4. I wish I had learned what you’re sharing here, Jessica, when I was your age (or younger!!!) … thankfully, though, it’s not too late and I’m beginning to find myself again – I’m glad you are, too! :)

    1. That’s the great thing, Sue – as long as you are breathing in and out, at any age, you can choose to step into what God has for you, what He’s called you to, and what you were made to give the world. As one of my absolute favorite quotes says, “Don’t deprive the world of who you are!” Love it!

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