Great Expectations

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Sometimes I see other people having nice, sweet relationships and I think that’s what I should have too. But you can’t always get what you want. Truth be told, several of my most cherished relationships have been tested lately. It has taken a lot of energy to process how I feel about all this. I feel shocked. I’ve experienced some disappointment. But, I also feel empowered. When the supports that you count on, or thought you could depend on, start to fall away one by one, you begin to realize that you can exist despite it all. No matter what my relationships were supposed to afford me (purely by society’s definition of their role) they never cease to surprise me.

People will basically tell you just about anything to serve their own needs if it means enough to them. What I don’t understand is how people can treat the ones closest to them with blatant disregard. I believe every person, no matter who they are, will ultimately do things solely to serve themselves. As I carry on further down this path, I hope to keep becoming the kind of person who can see beyond that type of self serving behavior and honor myself, as well as those who mean the most to me, by making a valiant effort to think of others as well as myself. If I want to be treated with loving kindness then that is what I need to be giving others. Sometimes when others are not showing you kindness is when they need to be receiving it most. I need to consider other’s feelings as much as my own, even if others are not doing the same. I am willing to love the bad as well as the good from those I care about. I am willing to consider how my actions and words will affect the ones I love, but not everyone is strong enough to do that.

I feel like expectations have been the worst things I could have. “Expectation is the root of all heartache” – William Shakespeare  As I reflect on my experiences over the last few months, it is my own expectations that have let me down, not the people around me. In the end, it is me who has complete control over how I feel and ultimately how I let things affect me. It will serve me best to simply love what is, not fight against it. I can’t make someone feel differently about me and I can’t force anyone to feel obligated to show me kindness.

And so, I continue down this road, learning more and more about myself, my relationships and ultimately what I want and don’t want for myself. I am in complete control of my own happiness.

“When people show you who they are, believe them the first time”  -Maya Angelou  

photo courtesy of hotblack on morgue file.com

Change the Channel

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I accept personal responsibility.  I accept blame.  Even if I had been blindly guided into each decision that has led me to today, I still indict myself for every choice.  I’m not any worse off than my neighbor and I never got a bum deal.  It’s all perspective and it’s all in my head.  Taking an honest assessment of my strengths and making an effort to sort through my weaknesses keeps me in check.  If I am to find happiness, I need to be willing to give up on blame.  I need to stop giving away my power and take responsibility for my own life and my own choices.  The consequences give me wisdom to grow, change and learn from all that I experience.  The consequences are what help me survive and motivate me to stay my course on this journey.

So what am I supposed to do with all this disappointment?  Harboring disappointment will never lead to happiness.  I seem to feel disappointed when others fall short of my expectations, so again, it’s ultimately my responsibility to keep my expectations in line with reality.  And then there is regret.  I am accountable for my own choices and therefore must direct the blame inward when a personal choice does not meet a positive outcome.  The disappointment about the outcome itself should only be a lesson, not a source of stress.  My energy is better focused on finding healthy ways to avoid poor decision making by using more careful analysis.  Always thinking that the glass will remain half full no matter what happens is a fool’s fallacy.

Then again, when I have a win, I can feel fully empowered while I take my victory lap with my fists pumping and my smile wide.  Positivity is a skill to be mastered and must be attained with mindfulness.  The world doesn’t owe me any favors and I’m ok with that.  I take pride in working hard for what I achieve.  Fulfillment is like a warm shower after a long run…sometimes that’s the best part.

The running diatribe of others that I hear means that I’m listening to the wrong source.  It’s not my burden to bear, it’s my choice to change the channel.  Even static in between the stations is better than negativity.

Better yet….unplug.

Aside

myhappypromise

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