“Don’t get your hopes up.” is well-intentioned advice designed to protect you from disappointment.
You: "I hope I hear
back on that job application." Them: "Don't get
your hopes up in case you don't hear back." You: “I hope I get the
job." Them: "don't get your
hopes up too high. You might not." You: "I hope I like my
new job" - Them: "Don't get your
hopes up. Every job has downsides." You: "I hope I can
contribute well to this project and be recognized." Them: "Don't get your
hopes up. Recognition doesn't come easy."
The argument is that you will be disappointed if you get your hopes up. That’s true. Sometimes things don’t go as planned, and we get disappointed.
How do you feel when someone says, “don’t get your hopes up” to you? You think, “yeah, they might be right,” and you feel discouraged or disappointed. Right?
Do you realize that by talking yourself out of hope, you are deciding to be disappointed now? Our human brains do this! We don’t want to feel a certain way in the future, so we think thoughts that have us feeling that way now. We get disappointed ahead of time!
In addition to blocking a hopeful feeling and getting disappointment early, I want you to think about how you show up when you are blocking hope. How will you show up in that interview when you’re worrying about disappointment? How will you approach that project if you don’t get your hopes up? Will you show up loving your new job if you are worried you might not love it? Will your energy help or hurt your goal?
Why NOT get your hopes up? You get to feel hope. There isn’t a downside to that.
Indeed, you might still feel disappointed in the future, but RIGHT NOW, you get to feel hope and excitement!
You: “I hope I hear back on that job application.” –
Also, you: your hopes are up, and your brain is thinking of all the things you can do to make your dreams come true.
You: ” I hope the interview goes well.”
Also: You approach the interview with energy and excitement, and you are prepared.
You: “I hope I get the job.”
Also, you: You get to be excited right now! Why wait?
You: “I hope you like my new job.”
Also, you: Great! You’ll show up on day 1 with positive energy, and guess what? You’ll love that job on day 1.
“I hope I can contribute well to this project and be recognized.”
Also, you: Perfect, now you’ll look for ways to contribute and have energy for action and results.
You can go ahead and get your hopes up. There is no downside. You get to feel excited right now, and that excitement will generate positive energy for you that will drive you to move forward and achieve the goal. You get to tell people how you think it will go, and you might be right!