Expectation leads to disappointment, failure, betrayal, hurt, anger... Just a few examples:
- I did "this" for someone and they didn't "insert something here";
- I went into this relationship expecting _____________________________________
- I gave this with the expectation of ________________________________________
- I was a friend and they betrayed me by __________________________________
- I treated him/her great and all he/she did was ____________________________
- I spent my hard earned money on that and he/she ________________________
- I trusted him/her but he/she _____________________________________________
- I loved him/her, but he/she ______________________________________________
- I made an agreement with him/her, but __________________________________
- I did this for them because ______________________________________________
The list could go on & on. Finish each sentence with anything generic and see what your answer is. Then look back at how, if you were giving "unconditionally" that person could not have disappointed you, betrayed you, used you, and so on..... as it is only when we "give" with expectation that such an outcome can be reached.
Instead, I now consciously make sure that when I give, that I give "it" away without expectation or condition. There are times that I just don't have "it" to give (emotionally, physically, financially, whatever)... so I don't give it. If I am not prepared to give it without an attachment to the outcome, then I don't. This doesn't mean shutting down and not giving ever again. That is counter-productive. Learning to give because it is right and I have it to give and if I give it without an attachment to the outcome, then I can be pleasantly surprised when I do get something positive back (usually 100 fold, because I gave it willingly & without attachment from my heart). Those who operate out of true respect and love for another, must do so for self first. Giving more than we have depletes us and becomes unhealthy. Not giving at all and always taking creates the opposite, and is just as unhealthy. Finding balance in giving and receiving is a hard thing to do sometimes, especially when you are a continual giver (a whole new topic!).
Part of my "weight" problem was NOT putting myself first. I thought this was selfish. Instead, I have come to understand that I had to do this, to gain self-respect and compassion for self. Once I did this (long long journey to get there!) then I could treat others with the same without taking from myself. Equal exchange. If I make an agreement and the other person does not fulfill their end of the agreement, I have to then step back and see what the lesson was and where to go from there. It is no longer about how that person betrayed me (this was my biggest issue in life). Now, is their failure to uphold their end due to their lack of respect to me as a person/friend (whatever)? What I do now is up to me. I used to give this control to them. It's not about them anymore. I am my responsibility, they are responsible for theirs. It took me a long time to learn that one. Sometimes I have to step back/walk away because that relationship no longer serves a positive role in my life or theirs. Allowing them to continue to use/abuse me is dysfunctional to all parties involved. I determine what I choose to accept. If I choose to accept less than what is equal exchange then that is my choice. But if I don't, then I need to take measure (sometimes hard but necessary) to change things. Sometimes I have to go to higher self and talk to their higher self.... sometimes this helps. Other times that person is so wrapped up in their own issues/materialistic needs that they can't see or they don't care. All I can do is wish that person love and step away. That relationship has served its purposed at that time. I can't be angry at them, as I accepted everything I got.
Responsibility is first and foremost. Without it, one dismisses their part in taking an active role and doesn't learn from the outcome. I no longer need to be the enabler in the dysfunctional relationship. I am no longer subject to manipulation by guilt. I can see this for what it is now and I don't take someone's inability to honor their word or be respectful of me as my issue any longer. I can see it for what it is. (Singing "I can see clearly now the rain is gone..." lol) I now send love to those who are in so much pain and fear that they need to suppress another to feel power or good about themselves. One day they will hopefully know the freedom I experience now by releasing myself from all of those emotional issues that were weighing me down in every way (physically, mentally, spiritually).
My reaction, my issue, my responsibility. Their reaction, their issue, their responsibility.
I consciously choose my responses now. I might come to anger, but I quickly recognize it and then stop to delve into "why am I angry". It's never the other person that is the focus, but always myself. They are just the "trigger". I let myself experience the emotion attached (cry, anger, whatever) and a few minutes later I am done. I no longer hold onto that emotion. It does not serve anything other than an outlet of that experience. Holding it in just causes it to have to come up at a later time. Sometimes when we hold so many things in, then we crash or explode. It wreaks havoc on our health. Why would we choose this over letting it go and moving on? Our intellect. We feel like failures if we "feel", cry, take responsibility, etc". It is soooo much easier when we can blame someone else. But that just creates a vicious cycle that never ends well for anyone involved. I've found it so much easier to be honest at all times. How can I trust another if I cannot trust myself?
We create the expectations of perfection, failure, not good enough, disappointment, betrayal. For only if we attach an outcome to anything, can we even experience those things. If there is no expectation attached, then we can't be disappointed, betrayed, or fail. It is by our own standards that we create such attachments. I choose to give without expectation or attachment, only those things I am prepared to give though. If I can't do so, then I need to say no. Fear of hurting another creates the inability to say no. But are you hurting them or you by giving something you can't give freely? Isn't it better to give and let go? Once we are able to give freely, we get so much more freely in return. This can be a hard concept in the beginning, but over time it becomes natural and so easily understood. Things can be so simple. Why do we choose to allow our intellect to complicate things?