I’ve been working on the concept of Teamwork in our home. More specifically, I expect my kids to want to cheerfully do their chores because we’re all on the “Home Team” and to “win,” we need to work as a Unit. But...not really. As my husband and I were talking, I admitted, “I really don’t expect them to cooperate.” This explained a lot as to why my methods had been so wildly ineffective. I truly didn’t believe they would do what I asked. My tone of voice and micro-managing checking behaviors are evidence of that. Our expectations for our children can have a profound effect on them, so this is a subject worth exploring. I have found that when I center myself and get intentional before I ask them to do something, I parent with a more positive tone and allow them the opportunity to complete their work.
I’ve also been noticing this power of expectations more with clients. It’s amazing how cunning our self-sabotaging behaviors can be. “I really don’t expect this relationship to work out,” a client said to me. “I’ve been with them almost as long as any relationship ever…this is usually the time it falls apart.” How does that belief show up in our behaviors? It can be ever so subtle. You don’t respond to their text, you are aloof when they go to kiss you, you rationalize engaging with people you know are attracted to you.
Our expectations matter. As our perception changes, our behaviors change and therefore our realities change. If you’re looking to make some shifts in your life, ask yourself first, “What do I really expect or believe that could be getting me the current results I’m getting?" If you’re brutally honest with yourself, you may just discover that you have been getting the results you were truly expecting.