Posted on Aug 4, 2015 in Self-Help

Having expectations of someone, of an environment or of a situation will undoubtedly put distance between you and that person, place or thing.

It is like, for example, standing in front of a friend with a box in your hands. You are reaching out to them with this object much like you would offer a present. However, this is the opposite of a gift because it’s an empty box. With this reach you are saying, “there are a number of things that I need you to put in here. I need them from you and if this box isn’t full, I will not be fulfilled, I will feel poorly and I will blame you.” (Expectations leave you prey to the pain of disappointment which often spirals into resentment and/or guilt. And the divide stretches further.)

So as long as you are occupied with the job of holding this empty box, the distance will remain between you and them. Your hands are not available to touch, to hold, to connect with this other person. Physically, emotionally, mentally, the distance will remain.

The same rule of relation applies to experiences of places and things.

Reflect on for whom, for what and for where you have your own expectations… They may be more broad, like holding an expectation of a vacation trip having pleasant weather; of having a work project be successful; of having the body maintain health; or of having your parents act a particular way. They may also be more subtle, occurring on a moment to moment basis, like expecting a movie to make you laugh; a meal to taste delicious; or a friend to be available to listen.

Can you free yourself enough to simply meet whomever and whatever comes, with open arms? Are you available enough to receive what they do/it does have to offer? Or, are you too busy holding on?

*This is not to say that goals and plans don’t have a place. It is to say that, acting with expectation of their result would be to proceed under the impression of one’s entitlement on a particular future reality.


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