The one thing that destroys relationships and rips friendships apart more than any other is expectations. Saying that others are not meeting our “needs” usually means that they are not living up to our expectations of them. We then try to seek out the reasons they are not meeting our expectations and project our often false perceptions on them and in some cases try our very best to change them.
Many times when you become connected to another person, you set your mind on how they should act towards you…when they should show up for you…how they should show up for you…that they should always be there for you…that they owe you something, and the truth is THEY DO NOT! You have no right to demand that a person feel a certain way about you, celebrate you, or even care about you. How they show up and share their love and support is their choice and there is not much you can do about it.
Not being there as you expect does not mean that a person does not love or care about you. There are many love languages and people speak them in different ways. Just because their love language is not spoken in the way that you would speak it doesn’t mean that their love for you is nonexistent. It means they are choosing to love you in their own way, even if it is in a way that you don’t always understand.
About one year into starting my coaching business, I was approached by a local television station to do an interview about my services and some of the projects I was working on in the community. I was so excited about this opportunity and could not wait to share it with my significant other at the time. It was my expectation that he would be as excited for me as I was for myself; however, that was not the case. He was not only unexcited; he was upset that I was even considering it. He saw this as me being a “show off” rather than it being community enhancing and a promotional opportunity for me. Needless to say, I was extremely hurt and disappointed at the time, but this started my journey of learning to let go of expectations. It taught me that not every one would see things the way I see them or will celebrate me as I felt they should.
When you stop expecting certain actions from others, things become more clear to you and you are less frustrated and disappointed. Your space is there for you to shine and even when there is no one else there celebrating you or cheering you on; do it for yourself! Become your own best cheerleader instead of allowing your expectations of others to leave you in a victim mode.
I have worked very hard on letting go of expectations from others and it has given me a feeling of being set free. If you are not yet in that place, my recommendation is that you work on doing the same. I cannot tell you that letting go of your expectations will not be difficult for you (it was for me). But the one thing I can tell you is that it will be worth it!