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When your high hope exhaust you

Pull yourself back to reality and set your focus right

By Stella YanPublished 7 months ago 3 min read
When your high hope exhaust you
Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

Having hope means we anticipate something good will happen and this sometimes put us in a complex psychological and physical state which is a mixture of joy, restlessness, anxiousness, excitement, and sometimes fear. I personally experienced all that when I was expecting my child eleven years ago and that was the first time I realized having high hope can be exhausting.

High hope drives you restless and makes you feel guilty about simply sitting down and waiting. You may want to prepare ahead with real actions, but the more effort you put in the more vulnerable to disappointment you become. Before you know it the high hope has inflated too much and the fear of a burst will start to grow in you.

The beloved author Arnold Lobel of the famous Frog and Toad series wrote the short story ‘The Garden’. It says, Toad wanted to have a beautiful garden just like his best friend Frog’s and planted some seeds in his yard. But his seeds did not sprout as quickly as he anticipated so he sang to the seeds, read to the seeds, and played music to the seeds, thinking all these actions would help the seeds sprout and called these “very hard (garden) work”, not knowing sunshine and rain is all it takes for seeds to germinate.

The complex emotions associated with high hope can trick us into focusing on the wrong side of reality and cause unnecessary exhaustion. What to do then? Well, I have three points from self-enlightenment to share with you:

First, make sure your high hope is not built on greed.

Greedy desire is a reflection of what we desperately want deep down, such feelings can cloud our judgment and make us mistake false hope for real. An honest self-examination can definitely help but I think having a close friend listen to our thoughts and reasoning is the best way to pull us back to reality. Hope should be based on facts. Sometimes true hope can only be discovered after spending years learning, struggling, and debating with others, I know such hard work seems too scary and we want to take a shortcut instead. Beware though, many shortcuts are not legit and will only trap us in false hope.

Second, accept vulnerability.

Hope comes with disappointment, to me they are a couple. There is no such thing as a perfect wedding or a perfect marriage, they just do not exist. While we have hope of having some wonderful days ahead we must know that disappointment is a normal part of life. To me, the hardest disappointment comes from myself, me disappointing myself is the most hurtful and devastating. I am still learning to believe in myself while fully embracing my imperfections, limitations, weakness, and past mistakes. I know my self-acceptance will help me accept disappointment that comes from others and factors that no one has control over (like the pandemic).

Third, focus on what seeds you are sowing.

Hope is like a seed planted in the soil. Once the seed is planted we cannot stop wondering what kind of harvest it will bring. Yet out of all the uncertainty one thing I am sure of, I reap what I sow. I will never get oranges if I planted apples. While I am not sure how many days of bad weather lay ahead to harm my harvest, I can be sure of the kind of fruit that I can anticipate. So focus on what we sow today! If you sow hard work, patience, and perseverance, the relationships and careers that you build will also be the kind that has deep roots, that are long-lasting, and have a good chance of surviving a storm. If you sow impulsiveness, naiveness, and pride, the outcome can be very much the opposite. Instead of having some sleepless nights fantasying about your future harvest, think hard about the attitude and motivation behind it today.

“The miserable have no other medicine but only hope.” — William Shakespeare

Hope should be a healing medicine, not a source of exhaustion.

This article was first published on Medium, here is the link.


About the Creator

Stella Yan

PhD in Physics. A wife and mother living in the US. Writes about science, religion, and self-reflection.

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Comments (6)

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  • Danwil Reyes6 months ago

    Nice! Thank you for sharing your perspectives on this subject.

  • Novel Allen7 months ago

    So true, it's like writing a piece on Vocal, expecting a top story because u think it is so great. I mean, everyone thinks their piece is great, right. Dashed hope is the worst. Live in the moment, I say. what will be will be. Just be you and to heck with everything else. Subscribing.

  • Babs Iverson7 months ago

    Subscribed!!! Excellent truths!!!👏💖😊💕

  • Cathy holmes7 months ago

    nicely written.

  • Mariann Carroll7 months ago

    Hearted and subscribe. Love the message ❣️

  • I find it very difficult to do the second one, accept vulnerability. Because I tend to be too hard on myself when I'm disappointed. So, I tend to work for it but I aim low to avoid disappointment. Or I hope for the best but I expect the worst. Lol. I know this isn't a good way but it's what works for me for time being. All 3 of your tips were excellent!

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