I read an article today about the great Bollywood legend, Amitabh Bachchan. In his interview to the newspaper he has described how even after acting for around 200 films he still feels nervous before a shoot. Even when standing in background he is cautious about his body posture. He also mentioned that he has sleepless nights. While reading the article I was wondering how a legend like him can be so tensed for something that comes naturally to him and what he has been doing for more than half of his life (he is 76 at present). And then in the next few lines I read the reason. He is concerned about people liking the movie and his role; about meeting their expectations.
This isn’t the case only with our most loved superstar, it happens with everyone and everywhere. We are constantly trying to live up to people’s expectations. The more good work we do the higher the expectations. The more praise we get the more fear of being failed. It forms a vicious circle.
“My boss loved my work and promised me a promotion. I better not let him down”
“Dad and mom believe I am very intelligent and can land into a good job. I better find it fast”
“My elder brother was one of the toppers in university, everyone in friends and family expects me to be the same. What if I can’t meet their expectations?”
Although this fear is not bad and helps us stay motivated; but many times it introduces unwanted stress. Seeing today’s busy lifestyle and higher levels of competition it is not surprising that even school kids need to take anti-stress pills. However remembering this simple fact helps us to change our perspective – “I don’t need to please everyone, just give my best. Because people liked me in the first place for what I am, so if I give my best they will keep appreciating me.” And anyways taking the pressure doesn’t help.
So are you stressed or thinking too much about something at the moment? Just reflect back to check if its not based on “people’s expectations”