The way we set our expectations often governs how we feel in many scenarios in our lives. We might feel down when our expectations aren’t met, and on the other hand, setting reasonable expectations can lead to better outcomes. Ben Winter, Team Building Expert, Expectations Guru, and the founder and CEO of Success Improv, joins us today to explore how learning and implementing the rules of improv into every area of your life helps you become successful in life.
From traveling to personal growth to marriage and child to divorce and parenthood to entrepreneurialism and inspiring others, Ben certainly hasn’t been idle in life. A couple of years out of college and he started doing things and going places he never would have expected. He has seen the animals of Tanzania and has traveled all over Europe with a 6-month-old child in tow. He has performed improv for over a decade, acted in several plays and even a movie. We talk about his ups and downs, the amazing experiences he’s had, and what he learned from them.
Between personal growth and improv, Ben found this weird realm called expectations. And while most people would shy away from such a thing, he decided to tackle it head-on. Along his journey, he began teaching that in his Success Improv business. From there, he noticed that there has to be a way to use that upset feeling to fix the situation. And he created the amazing “How to stop being upset” flow chart that can be found on his website.
Ben has over ten years of acting and improv experience. He has over 15 years of personal and professional growth experience, personal coaching and has owned several businesses, including Success Improv. As he calls himself, Captain Obvious, in short, grew up with the constant need to be right and have more information than the next guy. He is, in fact, getting better at not forcing that on other people keeping in mind what sometimes people say is subjective, which is why it doesn’t really matter if they’re wrong.
[3:40] Unmet Expectations – Upon being asked about one of his statements regarding unmet expectations resulting in a person getting upset, Ben clearly explains how in most people he has observed, unmet expectations of any sort are the sole reason behind people being upset.
[8:10] Set a Framework – Ben further delves deep into how expectations can help set a framework similar to setting a goal or boundary. He uses his very own example of setting a timeframe to finish the first or second draft of his novel. Hence, if he meets his goal of completing the first or second draft, he has successfully met his expectations; if not, it is when the problem of unmet expectation arises, explains Ben.
[13:50] Unknown Expectations – Upon being asked to throw light on how rules or laws are effectively expectations by the host, Ben explains while unknown expectations are the ones you didn’t see you had until it comes crashing down due to non-fulfillment, rules or laws as expectations are known expectations with clear known consequences. For instance, if you know that driving over the speed limit will give you a ticket. You should in no way be upset about getting a ticket when you’re pulled over, he says.
[18:55] Expectations are Unavoidable – Ben explains that when someone says they aren’t going to have expectations, that then and there itself is clearly an expectation about expectations! Hence, he cleverly uses the most commonly occurring example to show how impossible it is to avoid expectations.
[20:25] Improv Career – Upon being questioned about how improv makes communicating about expectations easier by the host, Ben explains it is all about learning the rules of improv, expectations of how improv works, and being able to follow them.
[46:18] Combat Hate – In terms of combatting hate, Ben states that there’s only one way to go about it, and that’s to sit one-on-on with the people close to us, talk to them, get to understand them by figuring out their motivations because it could simply be the case of them being led astray without having any other choice.
[20:16] Reprogram our Subconscious Program – Upon asking how one can reprogram their subconscious program, Ben explains that most of us are subconsciously fighting ourselves in terms of whatever we want, be it a relationship or career. Hence, the starting point towards reprogramming one’s subconscious program is to be aware of oneself and actions first. The next is to seek somebody’s support, somebody’s help.
[1:22:40] Understanding Partner’s Expectations – Bill states the reason behind why many people skip understanding their partner’s expectations is because of the instant gratification they’re used to and expect. Since today’s technology is already doing it to everybody, giving them instant gratification, that’s exactly what many people expect from their partners as well. For instance, to solve all their problems and to do all the things around the house and so on.
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