I can almost always point to the cause-in-fact or at least the proximate cause of whatever jackassery is happening on any given day. Usually the cause is fairly basic such as “You went to the office” or “You left the house.” I take full and complete responsibility for those, although the imperative to earn a living and find food are largely unavoidable contributing factors to those causes.
Drill down a little deeper, though, and I can trace most issues back to an even more troubling root. Most days at least once I mutter to someone that the fault lies no so much with the stupid thing that happened, but in the expectation that something stupid wouldn’t happen. You had expectations. There’s your problem.
There’s quite a bit written about the dangers of low expectations, but it’s been my experience that the real danger lies in having expectations. Period. Full stop. It’s in those inexplicable moments when I momentarily ignore my own advice that I tend to get myself into the most trouble. I’d be far better served all the way around to remember that the moment you start having expectations of anyone other than yourself, well, you’ve practically set the stage for failure or at least for disappointment – usually both.
I’d do well to take my own medicine more often.