Stopping yourself from having expectations is not fun, exciting or easy.
Preparing yourself for the worst means that you have to think like a pessimist. You have to imagine yourself in a situation of pain, discomfort or damage to your ego.
It takes a huge amount of mental resolve and, as even the most realistic person has traces of optimism within them, it’s impossible to do in a way that fully prevents you from the disappointment when it doesn’t turn out the way you want it to.
The most difficult part is that the trigger to know when you need to start thinking like a pessimist is when you begin to feel excitement.
An emotion that is naturally enjoyable to experience is the exact emotion that you need to be able to recognise, stop, and replace with an image of what it will feel like when you don’t get what you want.
What true realists are able to do very well is understand that what they are excited for is never as important as what they already have.
True realists, who are able to maintain emotional neutrality in their expectations, always compare their worst-case scenario with a holistic view.
Even if it doesn’t work out, they remember that life will go on, that there may be other opportunities and, even if there aren’t, it could be much worse, and anything in their life that they currently care about is a blessing to have regardless of anything that happens in the future.