A lot of marital issues come from unmet expectations. It’s inevitable that when two people come together, there will be disappointment when it comes to building a life together. Often times though, the pain of unmet expectations can be prevented. Let go of your assumptions and unrealistic expectations in a marriage by following these five helpful tips.
The number one reason why there are so many let down expectations is due to lack of communication. If you can really grasp how to communicate with your partner, you’ll see an immediate increase in met expectations.
2. Needs versus wants
This is a great question to ask yourself before or during the moment you feel your expectations aren’t being met. What do you really need versus what do you really want? Draw a line for yourself in between these two. For example, if you and your partner are going on vacation, make a list of things you need to make you happy. Mine is a nice place to stay with good service, a pool and hot tub, and a night out to a nice restaurant. My wants would be a spa day, a specific excursion I want to do, and shopping. If my needs are met, then I had a great vacation. If my needs and some of my wants are met, then I had a fantastic vacation. Understanding that your want list is just an added bonus will help you balance and meet the right expectations.
3. Let go of control + don’t control others
Expectations are under-met goals. Goals are objects of your ambition. An ambition is the strong desire to work hard to achieve something. All of these are you wanting to control a successful outcome, whether it’s controlling your environment or controlling your spouse. Don’t fall into the vicious cycle of under-met goals. When you learn how to let go of controlling your environment and your spouse, you’ll gain peace with your outcomes.
4. Don’t assume
You know the saying: if you assume, it makes an “a**” out of “u” and “me”. Assuming is another dangerous reason why expectations are blown out of proportion and not met to the standard you would like them to be. Assuming that your spouse understands your needs and even assuming you understand your spouse’s needs will always end in un-met expectations.
5. Find things you’re thankful for when you’re struggling
If you find yourself in a moment that your expectations aren’t being met and circumstances are beyond your control, take a moment and list out what you’re thankful for. In moments like this, it can be hard to find what fills you with gratitude so start with the basics. Are you thankful for your family, your home, your job, your health? Start spreading your thankfulness from those epicenters until you feel like your situation isn’t as bad as you thought it was.
Do you and your spouse struggle with expectations in your marriage? Let us know if this was helpful for you. Have you found other ways to manage your expectations in your marriage? Feel free to share your wisdom with our readers below!