Do your high expectations serve you or stop you?

( Video on the bottom of this page) Having too high expectations of yourself may be a guaranteed way to get nothing done. It’s when we have too high standards for our work. Often- it has nothing to do with the quality of our work, but rather our opinion of it. 

(I know it is true specifically in creative work, in writing, arts, moving forward with projects where you will be the only one to criticize or blame. However it is not the same as having an ideal creation in our mind and trying to reach it through perfecting our craft.)

For some people, like perfectionists, a way to get something done is to lower their expectations.

But it sounds bad, doesn’t it? “I’d rather die!” “Unthinkable” “Unacceptable” “I would not be able to handle the shame” – thinks a perfectionist.

We think it is praiseworthy to have high expectations of ourselves. I believed it too but… it was one big lie. If you look closely, you may also see:

Too high expectations are a way to let yourself down.

How do you know if your high expectations are serving you or stopping you? How do you know if they are too high?

Ask yourself some good questions:

  • Do my high expectations help me to create what I want, or do they stop me from creating it?
  • Do my high expectations hinder my work or speed it up?
  • Are they a part of my creative “flow” state or a state of despair?
  • Do my high expectations create anxiety? Do I feel that if I don’t meet them I will panic?
  • Am I overthinking or judging myself too much?

This is how high expectations serve you:

They are delaying the moment the world will look at what you have created and will judge it. Or… love it. Or both. Or there will be no response at all. For as long as you keep your work to yourself you don’t have to face the response it attracts.

Lowering your expectations (unless you are checking the safety of the airplane I am flying, thank you very much) could mean you start to think of the criticism, judgement that you will attract.

  • No worries, You will attract it anyway. Even with your perfect creations!  (and you will be ok)

You may think that you will be more acceptable when you’ll fulfill your high expectations. As in when you are “perfect.”

  • In reality those two things are completely unrelated.  Additionally, when you slow yourselves down, with those high expectations – you are not accepting yourself anyway. Why expect it from others? Lead by example!

Long time ago I talked in this video about my two remedies to perfectionism. (and while you are there, please subscribe! 🌷)

Do your high expectations hinder you ? They may be too high. It may be a pattern you developed to protect yourself. 

Do they help you reach higher and higher levels of achievement? If so, they are not too high.

If you struggle with this, and other limiting beliefs, my 12 week program may be perfect for you.