“You can’t put your expectations of me on me.” -Nipsey Hussle
As it pertains to expectations, I struggle in the areas of self-expectations, relationship-expectations, and God-expectations. It seems that I have I always trying to force things in those areas of my life (yes, even with myself). I struggle with either setting my expectations too high or too low. These struggles have taken me back to “Circling the Mountain” again.
We all know someone who lives or lived by a timeline. They feel that there are specific times to have accomplished specific milestones in life, you know like graduating college, getting started in a career, buying a home, having kids, and marriage. If you know me, then it’s me… I am person that lived by a timeline. I just knew I was going to be married by 30, principal by 32, and living on my farm with no animals by 40 (I still have time for the farm). Self-expectations can cause a great deal of self-inflicted pain due to the rush that we put on life, pain that is hard to endure. Around 28 years of age all I could think about were marriage and being a principal, but what I learned is that it is so much more important that we are patient with ourselves and give ourselves time to grow. Because, at 30 I was NOT submissive enough to be a wife and if I would have become a principal at 32 I would’ve been fired because of my, then, feisty attitude that I am currently being deliverT from… and both would have set me back on my journey to mental wellness tremendously.
Take Tamar Braxton for example, she recently openly spoke about how she had to learn what makes Tamar happy because of the unrealistic timeline that she placed on herself (including the industry’s timeline) and she said that she had to take a step back from everyone including herself and readjust what was important and how that time away changed her life for the better. The expectations that she had placed on her life was causing her to react in a negative way, she began to lose people that she loved and her relationship was tested tremendously.
Yes, we are supposed to write the vision and make it plain but, and correct me if I’m wrong, the scripture does not say write the time and date that it is supposed to happen.
Now when I am setting self-expectations I think of them as goals. When working towards those self-expectations I “DO MY BEST” to remember that small progress towards my goals is still progress and as long my progress is continual and consistent, I will accomplish my goals and meet my expectations.
What I have learned in these past years is that building a relationship takes time. Childhood relationships and adult relationships are completely different. I can remember as a child if I liked someone I told him and then BOOM he was my boyfriend and I, his girlfriend. But as an adult we have to take time to get to know a person… and believe me it takes more than 1 month or even 6 months for that matter. When building a solid relationship, you must take time to build a friendship first… beginning the relationship with high expectations of the other person is like touching the oven knowing that it is hot… 10/9 you are going to get burned. LISTEN TRUST ME, I KNOW… I HONESTLY JUST LEARNED THIS LESSON AGAIN!!!! (don’t judge me) You have to build expectations as the friendship progresses. (that’s how trust and faith are built). When growing a relationship it very important that you understand that in the beginning that person is going to love you the way they know how to love someone… THEY DON’T KNOW YOU SO HOW DO YOU EXPECT THEM TO KNOW HOW TO LOVE YOU… you have to show them… IT IS VERY MUCH SO OK TO TEACH SOMEONE HOW TO LOVE YOU, BECAUSE IF YOU DON’T, WHO WILL… that’s a part of growing the friendship into a relationship. The expectation of thinking that someone knows what you like… what makes you feel loved… and what you don’t like… is very childish… but for some reason we all (10/9) have had that expectation (I know I have… more than once too)… people are not mind readers… however, if they truly care about you, as you are teaching them to love you and to care for your heart they will take notes and do their best to live up to those expectations… NOW HEAR ME… if they struggle to meet your expectations don’t be alarmed… it could simply mean that it’s going to take a little reteaching or revisiting some topics in order for them to get it right… ROME WASN’T BUILT IN A DAY!
Have you ever prayed to God and when you opened your eyes you thought God was going to have what you prayed for laying at your feet? Or, have you ever prayed to God, and when you opened your eyes everything was still the same? And because of those reasons you began to work in your own might because you stop expecting “The Will of God” to work in your favor. It’s almost like planting an apple tree… you know to put the seed in the ground, you know to care for and nurture the seed, but when it doesn’t produce fruit when you need it to you chop it down and go to the store and buy apples (the quick fix… or what I like to call… the flesh fix).
What I am learning is what we expect from God is exactly what he expects from us. The other day I was crying and praying and praying and crying asking God why wasn’t I good enough for the relationship and why doesn’t he want to be with me and in my heart I felt God say, “Try ME… what you expected from a person expect that from me Lindsey because I want you, I need you, and you are definitely enough for me. The peace that I can give you no man can give that to you nor take that away from you… but I need you to expect more from me as I do from you.” (HONESTLY, I “FELT” HIM SAY THAT TO ME)
Listen I am not religious because I don’t believe in religion but I AM A BELIEVER OF GOD, THE LORD (JESUS CHRIST), AND THE HOLY SPIRIT… and I believe if we stop putting our expectations in people, and in ourselves for that matter, and place all of our expectations in God, he will not only give us the FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT, but he will also grant us the desires of our hearts. But we have to expect it from him, we have to wait on his timing (MAAANNN THIS IS HARD… I CAN TESTIFY TO THIS), and we have to trust him and place our faith in him. What he gives us is what we are supposed to have and remember he already gave us his BEST… and through his BEST he is continuously giving to us.
In a nutshell, expectations mean having a strong belief in something or someone. Expectations are a gift and a curse. Understanding that setting expectations is the most vulnerable state you will ever be in because you are putting your trust and faith in something or someone, even if that someone is yourself. Remember this, the reason we sometimes feel like failures is because we lose faith and trust in people and God because they didn’t meet “OUR EXPECTATIONS ON OUR TIMELINES” … expectations have no timelines… in order to meet an expectation you have to want to meet it. And, it is my belief that the only way to meet expectations is with FULL trust and faith in God, his timing, and having patience (I know… that’s a tough one too but it’s necessary)
The Chic Educator 🍎
Circling the Mountain (previous blog post)
Habakkuk 2:2 (Then the Lord replied: “Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets so that a herald may run with it.” NIV)
Thank you to my inner circle, our conversations inspired this blog post. Thanks Kaye for the references to Tamar.