Is the glass half empty or half full?
That’s the existential litmus test to determine somebody’s worldview. We ask this question to determine how people perceive events and objects, either optimistically or pessimistically.
But the answer isn’t quite as straightforward as it sounds. Whether we see the glass as half empty or half full has nothing to do with the water and everything to do with our expectations.
There’s a fascinating philosophy book about the fate of humanity, and how it depends on the kind of selves we become today. It’s heavy stuff. But the author makes a brilliant point about this very issue.
If we expect a full glass, a glass with water up to the middle will seem half empty; but if we don’t expect any water at all, then the same glass will seem half full.
That’s the power of expectation. The water doesn’t change, we do.
And so, whenever we feel the rumblings of dissatisfaction, the more important question to ask of ourselves is, what expectation are we holding onto in this moment?
Because if we believe that life needs to be a certain way for us to be happy, if we look out in the world for happiness and expect it to be perfectly gift wrapped to our exact specifications, then the glass will always remain half empty.
And we will only become tenser and more limited in our joy.
But if we learn to let go of our rigid picture of how the world should be and simply watch the tapestry of life unfold, we will find peace at every turn.
LET ME ASK YA THIS...
How often does the happiness you experience today visit you in the way you anticipated?
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That Guy with the Nametag
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