3

While searching on the Internet, I found that another way to say it is "Don't set your expectations so high", but I didn't find anything related to "Don't put your expectation so high". Is it grammatically correct to say it?

2
  • 5
    It's grammatically correct, but "set" is more idiomatic.
    – Hot Licks
    Jun 30 at 23:43
  • 3
    It's fine, except expectations needs to be plural to invoke the fixed form. Jul 1 at 13:16

2 Answers 2

6

It is grammatical, but peculiar. Better: "Don't set your expectation so high" or even better "Lower your expectations."

1
  • Google 3-grams would be reasonable supporting evidence for 'not unacceptable but unusual'. Jul 1 at 11:00
1

Yes, it is grammatically correct to say "Don't put your expectation so high", but expectation should be pluralized. However, the more idiomatic expression is "Don't set your expectations [so / too] high". There's also "Don't keep your expectations too high".

As of writing, searching for

  • "Don't put your expectations so high" on Google fetched about 791 results (51 accessible results).

  • "Don't put your expectations too high" on Google fetched about 2,530 results (244 accessible results).

  • "Don't set your expectations so high" on Google fetched about 1,510 results (258 accessible results).

  • "Don't set your expectations too high" on Google fetched about 19,900 results (279 accessible results).

  • "Don't keep your expectations too high" on Google fetched about 3,090 results (275 accessible results).

  • "Don't keep your expectations so high" on Google fetched about 2,320 results (56 accessible results).

As you can see, "Don't set your expectations too high" appears to be the most common expression. There's also "Lower your expectations" as Gedgar suggests, with about 6,13,000 results (383 accessible results) on Google.

4
  • Note: The number of results I've taken are from the last page, which always has the correct number of results. So don't be surprised when you see 6,09,000 results for "Lower your expectations". The actual number (from the last page) is about 381.
    – Justin
    Jul 1 at 15:34
  • I don't think that "check the last page" approach is remotely accurate. Consider "Don't set your expectations too high", certainly a very popular phrasing. I see 31 pages of results, so ~300 listed results. There is simply no way there's so few occurrences of that phrase on the public internet, so obviously Google is limiting the number of displayed results. For confirmation, adding a site restriction, e.g. site:reddit.com, still has 31 pages of results, from a single site, and I'm absolutely certain there are still more occurrences on Reddit alone.
    – Bob
    Jul 1 at 18:34
  • @Bob: That's right. I was referring to the number of accessible results. Results that are displayed to everyone in common, or results that everyone can see. The number on the first page is just an estimate. Take "Don't put your expectations so high" for example, there are about 1700 results according to the first page, but there are only just three pages of results (51 results, including omitted results). That can be quite misleading.
    – Justin
    Jul 2 at 4:12
  • @Bob: In any case, I've added both the estimate (subject to vary) and the actual number of accessible results that Google displays :)
    – Justin
    Jul 2 at 4:34

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .