Of ourselves and the other
We can’t control the way others think, feel, or behave. We may try to, and we may want to, but ultimately, how they act is up to them. We may contribute to and perhaps influence their outcome, but we do not make the last call. Fundamentally, we are each of us responsible for our own thoughts, feelings and behaviours.
To recognise this, can be wonderfully freeing for both ourselves and the other. It creates the space for openness and possibility, whereby we can learn to meet each other with curiosity and for who we truly are. Criticism, disappointment and frustration no longer pave the way for our interactions. We are nurturing a space to be authentic and non-judgemental.
In creating expectations of the other - expecting them to think, feel and act as we would like them to - we are cultivating limitations and boundaries both for them and ourselves.
We often set these expectations, from a place of vulnerability. It's important to be able to recognise that our sense of self does not come from basing our own feelings of happiness, worth and confidence on the behaviours of others. This can be painfully harmful for ourselves and our relationships. We are projecting onto another an outcome that can often only lead to dismay and/or discontentment. In releasing and letting go of these expectations, we are able to kindly release each other.
With this freedom, we create a space in which we can be caring towards ourselves, be compassionate towards others, and create meaningful connections.