Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Expectations In Our Relationships: 4 Tips

“Woman Mad At Her Husband Against A White A Background” 
by David Castillo Dominici via FreeDigitalPhotos.net 


Are they the root of heartache in a relationship?


We all go into relationships with some minimum expectations, very basic needs that we expect to be met because who wouldn't? One of those is respect obviously. Others are love, support and affection.

But sometimes things begin to go awry in our relationships and then we wonder what on earth happened... why there appears to be anger, upset, hurt, maybe resentment, simmering emotions and tension… it's so incredibly important for us to take note of what our expectations are and then on a continual basis assess and then reassess to make sure we are not expecting more than what we should from our partner.

1. Are We Being Realistic or Unrealistic?

Sometimes we may make the mistake of expecting our partner to be a mind reader or we become so comfortable with our partner that we begin to make assumptions and believe we already know what they are thinking about a situation; that we can safely assume that we already know their every thought and intention… then when they don't follow our "ideal" unrealistic script according to the plan we've devised in our head we are met with pushback from them… and then we feel great frustration. Even as a couple each person is an individual, something we must remember.

It's important to keep in mind
 that we are with an individual, 
not a carbon copy of our feelings, 
thoughts, perspective and dreams.

2. Are You Independent or Dependent? 

When we expect too much of someone, when we expect them to fulfill us, when we expect more nurturing, love and attention than the other person is able to give… that leaves us feeling empty, unfulfilled and unsatisfied. This is a sign of unhealthy dependence. (Obviously there is the other extreme; someone who is not invested in the relationship at all) But it is possible to reassess the dynamic of our relationships and see where we are too dependent, too needy, too people pleasing and with objectivity make the necessary changes. We can each make every effort to not expect our partner to be our everything. They simply cannot fulfill our every need, it's not realistic and it puts far too much pressure on the other person making them want to flee. If we are feeling unloved in our relationship it may be necessary to ascertain how our relationship with Christ is… is that empty feeling a sign something is lacking spiritually? Or is it that we truly need to connect closer in our relationship with our spouse? It's important to differentiate between the two.

It's crucial to keep doing our own thing whether it's the start of a relationship or years later, cling to our autonomy and not become dependent upon another… realize that the other person is to enhance your life, not be your everything. We are each our own person, we are complete through Christ not another individual. 

3. Expecting Instant Versus Slow & Steady...

Expecting too much too soon in our relationships can bring disastrous results and even the demise of an otherwise good relationship, one that may have had great potential but crashed and burned maybe because one person wanted more and super quick(!) before the other person was ready. (Relationships should become closer over a period of time, not instantaneously) Communicating in a loving manner without criticism but through dialogue conveying understanding of ones need to take things slow to the other person can help put the brakes on, salvaging what you have before everyone just throws up their hands and walks off from something that could have been amazing… with just more time and patience.

Relationships are like pudding… 
the instant with a whisk is okay 
but perhaps so much more satisfying 
is the mix on the stove top… 
great connections take time and effort 
but are totally worth it.  

4. It's About Them Not You…

As the relationship progresses our emotional connection will deepen as well… much of what we pledge and profess in our relationships is in regards to what we will do for the one we love. Our actions should then reflect our love for them. Our relationship shouldn't be based on "What am I gonna get?" Instead it should be "I love this person… I care for him (or her) and want to be there for him, I want to listen, to support, to show affection and my care for him." It's when partners begin to cross into self-serving waters, to reflect on what they aren't getting instead of continually acknowledging and appreciating the blessings they have right before them all the while continually making deposits, reflecting on what they could do for their partner; doing the little things to make them smile, to touch their heart… when we each focus on what we could do for one another both partners shine and so does their love.

© gps-gracepowerstrength.blogspot.com ~ 2015

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