I am 45 years old and have recently discovered something that was missing from my life, yep, you guessed it, expectations.
Despite having one too many expectations of myself (yes, this is the curse of being an over-achiever) I virtually had no expectations of others in my life. I am currently working on this.
In my personal relationships especially is where I lack. I had this notion that I had to be absolutely perfect and self sufficient otherwise I was not lovable. Only problem is, when you are too busy trying to be perfect, which is impossible, you are also setting unrealistic expectations on the other side which leaves no room for vulnerability or the ability to just be yourself.
Also, when you have no expectations of a partner, you give and give and receive nothing in return which is exactly how you structure things. You have designed your relationship this way, for whatever reason, maybe for control and safety however it is completely one sided and lonely. When you give and do not receive anything back, you are basically in a one sided relationship. This wears on you over time. You tell yourself that you are happy with things this way, you think you have some sort of control because you rely on him for nothing. However all you have done is isolate yourself in a one sided and empty relationship. This does catch up with you. Over time feelings of resentment creep in. Truly at no fault to your partner, as you taught him early on that this is what you would accept. Nothing.
This is fear based behavior. When you live in a place of fear you are constantly afraid of losing something. In my case, my biggest fear was if he knows I am not perfect, he will leave.
How sad! No one is perfect, not even a little.
So I am on this amazing Journey of preparing myself for a healthy and happy relationship and my next step is setting boundaries and expectations and knowing what I really want and expect from a relationship and partner.
Truth be told, this is kind of fun for me.
Below I have listed a few of my expectations of a relationship, some are quite simple:
There are more, but this is a good start. I don’t think I have experienced even ONE of these in the 19 years of relationships I was in. Maybe “fun”, but only at the expense of my integrity and morals sometimes. There was always a cost.
So I empower you to ask yourself, do you have expectations of the important people in your life? Your husband, boyfriend, children, co-workers, boss? If not, start thinking about what you want those expectations to be and jot them down.
I am also working on this in my professional life. What are the expectations I have of myself that are realistic, of my staff, my co-workers, my boss and the Company as a whole.
We really do teach people how we want to be treated. If we allow certain behaviors we are telling them that its OK. If we don’t accept certain behaviors, we are training people to treat us the way we deserve.
Some of this stuff is so simple you almost can’t believe it takes so long to “get it’.
Would love to hear from you if you are in the process of setting boundaries and expectations for yourself and others.