Expectations in Relationships – Insights from the Wilderness #14

Expectations in RelationshipsA reader recently asked “How do I let go of past resentments and pain once and for all”.

Harboring a feeling of resentment is not only a depressing emotional burden, it is also a subtle way of blaming someone else for “making” us feel something. When we blame others for our feelings, it almost always creates resentment and unhappiness in our relationships.

A humorous way of talking about blame is to narcissistically assume that we can march across the street and insist that the little old lady that lives in the house over there take an aspirin because “we” have a headache.

The truths is, virtually all of our negative feelings, including resentment, are created by “our own” unmet expectations.

So how do we go about dropping the negative feelings and resentments we are already carrying?

First it’s helpful to begin by reminding ourselves that the universal “Law of Attraction” will attract into our lives whatever we have chosen to think about. The stronger the emotional content of our thoughts, the stronger the attraction.

Because resentment and pain will only attract more resentment and pain it is definitely in our best interest to eliminate expectations from our thinking.

Secondly, I don’t believe our ego can ever totally let go of resentments. That would be like trying to tell ourselves to “not” think about a pink elephant with purple stripes. What we want to do with our resentments is recognize that the unconscious primitive ego of our own inner-child not only created the expectation……..it then compounded the problem by narcissistically assuming that the universe would actually somehow grant the wish or expectation.

Our unconscious primitive ego may actually believe its expectations will be met,  but that belief is nothing but a childish illusion…..a good example of magical thinking.

The bottom line…..“we” create virtually all of our own feelings and emotions.

When we begin to recognize and accept that we actually do have control over how we feel, we become empowered to begin the job of creating a happier future for ourselves.

The task is not letting go of resentment but rather acknowledging that our negative feelings are created by our expectations.

People tend to behave in ways that simply reflect “who they are”. When we take their behaviors personally we are buying into the illusion they disappointed us on purpose.

Even if the other person “was” intentionally trying to hurt us, we do not have the power to change them…..only they can do that. And until they do decide to change, what goes around comes around, which means they will have to live with themselves and the negative karma they send into the world.

But regardless of what they decide to do, the expectation that “our” resentment will somehow cause them to change is simply another harmful illusion that will ultimately bring us more pain.

We are the creator of our own future….the author of our own story. We have the ability to let go of our expectations.

It is not the universe that brings us pain……it is our unconscious primitive ego’s narcissistic expectations of how the universe “should” be.

When we learn to drop our expectations and give the people in our life permission to simply be who they are, and truly accept who they are, our life will become a lot happier.

© Dick Rauscher 2010

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