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March 24, 2015

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Really!  Snow!  It is March 23 – it is spring!  Expectation would be that it should be getting warmer – even if there are cool evenings but cool doesn’t mean snow cold!  When I do marriage counseling, I talk about expectations.  You need to know what your expectations are and verbalize them so others know.  Many times people “think” things or “feel” things but never “share” things.  When expectations are not known or spoken, many times fights ensue.  I had some newly wed friends that almost got divorced over taking out the garbage.  In his family, his mother took out the garbage.  In her family, her father took out the garbage.  Without realizing it they felt the OTHER person needed to take out the garbage as it wasn’t THEIR job.  They got mad at the other person because THE OTHER person wasn’t living up to their end of the bargain.

The other kind of expectation comes with planning.  The snow didn’t bother us today.  I did notice some awful rain storms over Orlando Fla.  What if this was the only day your family was there for vacation?  How would you like being out in the rain not enjoying the day?  I remember a cartoon with a farmer plowing the field saying “Lord, you know that this week we need rain so that the crops will grow.”  At the same time going the other way was a family on vacation saying “Lord, you know this is our only week for vacation, please don’t let it rain.”

We have expectations of family, friends, co-workers and other people. Sometimes these expectations are reasonable and sometimes they are not.  We need to look at realizing, verbalizing and sharing our expectations of ourselves and of others.  We need to plan and have expectations in our lives but we need to be flexible if things change.  We might power through but often just sitting still and thinking outside the box will give a much better solution that hitting our heads against the wall.

The weather predicted snow but the predictions changed every day the last few days.  Luckily we weren’t the one’s to get the 10-14 inches of snow that fell a little south of here.   The snow was beautiful and I enjoyed it.  The birds were back at the feeders in earnest – cold and snow seems to do that.  Stop and understand what you expect – of yourself and others.  Write it down, draw it out in pictures or journal.  Share with those around you the appropriate expectations and have a discussion – that means listening and talking about what you think your needs are and hear what their needs are.  Negotiate expectations and outcomes.  Evaluate how things are going.  Change can be a good thing so be ready for it as well as the predictable.

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