I find summer is a good time to slow down and examine our life and what may need some refining or transformation. I was reminded during the 4th of July how the fireworks going off at my bedtime reminded me of times I have been kept awake due to sparks being triggered after a heated argument with my spouse. It would tend to keep me up and disrupt my sleep. We have decided that bedtime isn’t the best time to have these arguments or even begin to try to resolve them.
Research shows that when involved in an argument, our brain shuts down the left brain, the logical side. That’s the side that can work through challenges with good reasoning and come up with solutions. Have you noticed that when you have these arguments you get nowhere so it’s best to adjourn from discussions and let your mind be put at rest? We can allow ourselves to release these tensions before trying to engage in constructive conversations. Then we might be more apt to discuss things logically later.
I believe many of our arguments are because of differences in perspectives and are controlled by expectations that we have that are not being met. Expectations can really get us in trouble in relationships. We can expect our partner to be a certain way, act a certain way, and say things the way we would expect. When we feel he or she isn’t matching up to our expectations we can get agitated and angry. We don’t realize it would be more helpful to work with our internal judge that’s quick to splatter it out on our partner or friends.
I once had a friend who had a lot of expectations of how I should be for her. It seemed she was measuring my actions as an indication as to whether I cared enough about her as a friend. What I’m aware of is the imperfect person that I am, I might act a certain way at times that isn’t necessarily in alignment with showing up lovingly. I might fail to meet others’ expectations. I think that was the case with her. I was sad to lose a friendship, but aware that sometimes it might be best to move on and let go as it appeared this friend had expectations of me that I would continue to not be able to meet.
When I know I am deeply loved by Father God, I need not concern about how others show up for me. Over and over in scripture, we are reminded of the unconditional love we have. No person can fulfill that requirement as much as we might expect ” that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love. Eph: 3:17-19
Steps on letting go of expectations:
- Learn to be compassionate with yourself when you fail to meet others’ expectations.
- Let go of expecting others to meet an image of what you think they should be.
- Going inside and releasing our internal judge by changing our perspective on those who have disappointed us.
- Recognize that our true value doesn’t come from others but from a loving relationship with God.