The Question of Expectation from Your Children - Simple Tips to Create Easy to Follow Expectations
By Andrew Loh
Parental expectations from their children fall into two different
categories - expectations of good and affable behavior and the other are
the expectations to demand children succeed in achieving different
goals. Both these expectations are good for your children. By expecting
good behavior and better achievements from your children, you can ensure
the following advantages:
Setting a series of expectations for better and positive behaviors needs a careful strategy
because good behavior does not come with applying force or demands.
However, a well-conceived strategy would help parents to set a package
of expectations that do not burden the young mind and tender psyche of
children. Before setting any expectation for good behavior, you should
consider the following steps that would help you formulate a workable
The type of behavior you are expecting from your children.
How far are you willing to discuss these expectations with children?
The quantum of time or duration for which you are
ready to wait for verifiable results.
For example, if you are expecting your children to stop their defying nature within a week or
so, you are probably expecting too much from them. Stopping defying
behavior from your children may take a long time, as it is an intrinsic
and psychological phenomenon. Do not force too much as it could be
Setting expectations for all future accomplishments are far more serious and critical. Most of the
achievements are visible in nature and they relate to your children's
career and personal spheres. Every child has his or her own aspirations
that he or she want to seek in life. However, children do not possess
the ability to express their minds in a clear manner. This might lead to
a gap in communication between children and their parents. This will
also result in parents misunderstanding their children and drawing wrong
inferences about their personal abilities.
What happens when parental expectations reach wrong proportions? The most likely scenario
that parents encounter when their expectations go wrong is utter
disappointment and frustration about their children's inferior
performance. In other words, children may not simply match their
parents' expectations and they may end up as failure in front of
What happens when children fail to match their parents'
expectations? The result could be extremely negative and at times,
disastrous. Here are some of the negative outcomes of excessive
expectations from parents:
Showing a strong sense of urgency
and impulsiveness to work towards a task.
No time for relaxing and
a sense of working ceaselessly without any reasons.
An obsession to
win every game even if it means to humiliate the opponent.
Trying to interact with children who are younger so
that they can win easily and outperform them.
Extreme anger and impatient nature.
Trying to measure everything with a sense of evaluation might lead to a
curt and impolite personality.
All the above-mentioned outcomes should be taken in combination to help children
to lower current set of expectations. The best approach is to avoid hurrying and helping
children to work on smaller and achievable goals. Excessive expectations
may break a child's mind with their intense pressure and strain.
Here are some tips to help children work towards your expectations:
Sit with children and tell them what you want from them: Almost all
children simply love their parents sitting by their side and talking to
them. First, gain children's confidence and talking about your
expectations. They could relate to getting good grades and marks in the
class or mending their bad behavior. Tell them about the advantages of
getting good grades and behaving politely in public and in front of
Set lower expectations and make your children work
towards the goal: Make sure that you are setting lower expectations for
your children so that they can work slowly towards achieving the goal.
Once they reach a goal, they will feel confident about their abilities
and develop the much needed urge to work on bigger and more difficult
Adjust the level of your expectations as and when it is
necessary: You may need to course correct your approach if you observe
that children are feeling tough to work on your expectations. If you
observe that there is no improvement, reduce the level of expectations
to help children reach smaller goalposts with ease.
Gradually raise the bar of expectations and help children succeed: It is always
better to deploy the classical approach of “one-step-at-a-time” to raise
the bar an expectation as and when there is a necessity. Always set the
bar at a level that is just below the “too much” level.
Parental expectations should never become a burden for children. The negative
outcomes of excessive expectations far exceed the number of benefits of
carefully calibrated set of expectations set by a parent.
When Our Grown Kids Disappoint Us: Letting Go of Their Problems, Loving Them Anyway,
and Getting on with Our Lives
By Jane Adams, Ph.D
How do today's parents cope when the dreams we had for our children clash with reality?
What can we do for our twenty- and even thirty-somethings who can't seem to grow up? How
can we help our depressed, dependent, or addicted adult children, the ones who can't get
their lives started, who are just marking time or even doing it? What's the right strategy
when our smart, capable "adultolescents" won't leave home or come boomeranging back?
In this groundbreaking book, a social psychologist who's been chronicling the lives of
American families for over two decades confronts our deepest concerns, including our silence
and self-imposed sense of isolation, when our grown kids have failed to thrive.