Preventing unrealistic expectations

July 1, 2002

While driving home from work one day, my attention was distracted bya sign nailed to a telephone pole announcing, "Lose weight, drop fromsize 14 to size 6 in two months, call 800-LOS-WEIT." For a moment,I let my consumer thinking dominate as I pondered how nice it might be towear one dress size smaller; after all, this is a dream of many women. Yethow could any woman drop four dress sizes in 60 days. I reverted to my physicianthinking and realized that this was an unrealistic expectation, not to mentionmedically risky. I reached home and sat down with the paper, whereupon myattention was drawn to an ad promising a "wrinkle cure." Well,I thought, that sure would be nice. But can anything "cure" wrinklesonce they are formed? Of course not, this is an unrealistic expectation.So, I passed off the two unrealistic expectations thinking I must move ontomore important matters.