Do you have people in your life who are inconsistent? Or consistently inconsistent? I do. I know this about them. It should not surprise me. But it does. Every. Time.
And every time I expect, perhaps subconsciously, that “this time will be different”.
I’m setting myself up for disappointment. Why should this time be different?
But I've come to realize, perhaps I'm setting them up too...
Let’s take a moment to check our expectations, shall we? Are we expecting more from someone than they have historically been willing or able to give? This is not a criticism. In fact, being honest in this way can help us to avoid being critical! Understanding and accepting the limitations of others is gracious.
So, consider how we communicate with this person. Wishing things were different isn't the same as communicating the changes that are desired. For instance, I am fully aware that I tend to beat around the bush. I try to cushion my requests or questions in conversation. My desire is to be amiable and as a result I come off sounding wishy-washy. There are times when I do not articulate directly and that leads to confusion. I can own that.
I know that when I don’t directly voice my specific expectations/wishes that I’m setting my friend, my husband, my child up for failure. How can they give me what I want, how can they “win”, if I don’t tell them in detail what I need from them? They can’t.
So let’s be honest. Let’s be fair. No more set-ups (subconscious or otherwise).
Remain aware of imposed expectations.
Be direct and specific in communication.