“I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you’re not in this world to live up to mine.” ― Bruce Lee
Hello beautiful goddess.
Expectations are something that are placed on us from a very young age. From our parents and family, teachers, peers, and - ourselves. So we then come to also expect certain behaviours and reactions from others. And when the outcome isn't as we had imagined, we become incredibly disillusioned. We wonder why our friend didn't make more of an effort on a special occasion or why our family member isn't able to understand a change in career direction. The way our loved ones will react is completely out of our control. Once we can embrace the lack of certainty in any interaction, the more graceful life will become, as we are able to react from presence - rather than from a place of expectation.
3 Steps For Managing Your Expectations
1. Accept where you and the other person are at. It's important to honour how you're feeling, and in turn how the other person is behaving. Suppressing feelings, or denying them altogether, is never a good idea. Similarly, the other person is looking at the same situation with a completely different set of eyes - literally. So if you're angry or disappointed, vent it in a constructive way: journalling, kick boxing class, discussing with your partner or close friend. Just not directly with the other person until you're in a calmer state of mind, and never write an email or text when you're upset!
2. Let go of the need to control. This second step can be incredibly difficult. It's impossible to control how anyone will react during a conversation, and trying to can lead to bitterness on both sides. When you notice yourself not receiving the reaction you were after, check in with yourself. An oldie, but a goodie, is coming back to your breath. As you breathe, remind yourself that you can trust in the divine power of the universe. If things are not working out the way you had imagined them, believe that you are indeed being led to where you need to be, regardless.
3. Release judgement of others. When we judge others, this comes from a place of fear. Fear of not inhibiting the qualities we don't like in the other person, fear of being judged ourselves, fear of being seen in a certain way. When we let go of control and release judgement, we are completely free to take every single moment as it comes. The shackles of expectation and disappointment disappear. Imagine living life with such a clear and open mindset...
I would never want to present myself as being a master of the 3 steps above! In fact, it's something I too really struggle with. When my husband and I are deep in conversation, and I am expecting him to give or say more, and he doesn't - I'm devastated. When a friend lets me down time after time, even though they are being true to themselves - I'm crushed. However, when I operate from a place of openness and trust, things flow with much more ease and grace. This is definitely my self-assigned spiritual 'homework' at the moment!
Now I’d love to hear from you, beautiful goddess. How do you deal with expectation and being seemingly let down by others? Paint a picture for us below in the comments.
Remember, other like-minded sisters come here each week for insight and inspiration. Your suggestions could be exactly what she needs to hear right now, to inspire her on her own wellness and self care journey.
Thank you so much for reading this week’s Monday Meditation.
In love and gratitude