Have you ever been called Type A? Labeled yourself an over-achiever? Defined yourself according to your accomplishments? And then been disappointed when life didn't go exactly according to plan?
Has life recently thrown you a curveball? Maybe you have dreams and goals, but somehow things aren't working out as you'd hoped? Or worse, maybe you've stopped believing that the life you've always wanted is even attainable?
If your answer to any of these questions is "yes," then do I have the book for you: Expectation Hangover: Overcoming Disappointment in Work, Love and Life by Christine Hassler. It is full of deep spiritual wisdom as well as practical advice for people from every walk of life. As a life coach who works with my clients to help them realize their dreams, I am going to make this required reading.
Naturally, we all have dreams and goals -- and by and large, this is a good thing. It's important to stay focused on the future and make our visions turn into reality through concrete planning and action steps. But inevitably, at some point in life, we will end up frustrated or disappointed when our plans don't become reality according to the precise timing or methods we desired. We may even end up feeling like we are not living up to our full potential. This is when we are suffering from an expectation hangover.
It definitely happened to me. Married at 26, I thought I'd be starting a family by my early 30's. But whenever I tried to talk to my husband about getting pregnant, he completely shut down. He'd told me when we first got together that he wanted to have children, yet something had shifted in our initial six years as a couple. His unwillingness to move forward eventually led to our divorce. I found myself at 32 depressed, single and struggling to find a partner. For the next five years, I had to learn to manage my expectations of what my life "should" look like, as I watched nearly all of my friends having first, second and even third children with their fabulous husbands.
But this heartbreak turned out to be one of the greatest gifts of my life. When my self-concept burned to the ground, I was forced to rebuild... and I did that by tuning into what really mattered: My friends and family, whom I love so dearly, my spirituality, and my connection to my own soul. I studied meditation and yoga, went to psychotherapy and workshops, and read self-help books. Eventually, I wound up happier than I'd ever been, more confident and more grounded in myself, and more devoted to serving others on their path to fulfillment. That's when, at 38, I united with the love of my life, got married, and am now delightfully pregnant with the children (twins!) I started dreaming of over 10 years ago.
Author, life coach and speaker Christine Hassler had a similar experience in her own life. In Expectation Hangover, she shares her story with vulnerability and authenticity of experiencing several major disappointments -- and how her path to recovery led her to a new place of happiness and purpose. She walked the journey of transformation, and has spent the decade since empowering other people to break the cycle of disappointment and start living the lives they've always wanted.
In Expectation Hangover, Hassler helps readers to understand what expectations truly are, identify when hidden expectations arise, and learn exactly why unrecognized expectations can create heartbreak. She then offers practical tips for rewiring your brain to escape from debilitating emotions like anxiety, worry, and regret and think in ways that support your dreams. Perhaps most importantly, this book will help you free yourself from believing you have failed, in any way and at any point in your life. Everything can be turn towards the path of learning and evolution.
I am speaking whole-heartedly when I say that this book can change your life. It isn't some complicated instruction book or hippie mumbo-jumbo about manifesting your dreams. Instead, it's a hands-on intuitive guidebook that provides you with clear, practical steps on how to transform disappointment on emotional, mental, physical, and spiritual levels into success and fulfillment. It will help you see that your expectations may be blocking your ability to appreciate your life as the blessing it truly is.
Photo credit: Katie Hoffman