The biggest heartbreak I ever had, originated in my own expectations.
Did you know that we tend to put ourselves on the stage and imagine that we get the attention of the other people?
Social psychology proved that we don’t get that much attention as we imagine we do. Also it proved that for us doesn’t really matter what other people see or think about us, but what we imagine they see or think.
Interesting, isn’t it?
With these two statements in mind I wrote the story today. It is about how expectations I crafted in my own mind gave me the biggest disappointments in life. And is also about how those hearbreakes pinned me into a victim seat for some time.
The suffering I experienced in my life, was mainly coming from the incongruence between what I imagined other people think and their blunt and personal opinion, or between what I imagined other people want (many times same things I wanted) or need and what they really wanted or needed.
Dream vs reality
I was dreaming. Daydreaming. Imagining I live the perfect life: ocean house, perfect love relationship, perfect job aligned to my higher purpose, perfect self relationship, family, friends and community impact, amazing playful kids… all the staff a hollywood movie would set the standard for.
Reality though, slightly different: regular job, normal house in a Romanian city, good relationship both with my husband and myself, family, friends, books, school, learning, teaching. No ocean and no waves except for holiday time, too less time to travel and dependant on the number of days off. Job partially aligned to my higher purpose, spending lot of time in self discovery, understanding and finding the way to materialize that perfect life. Busy. Too less time to enjoy what life had to offer.
The victim seat in the first row: reserved!
Before this reality check, when I was done dreaming I used to feel like a fallen angel. I found myself in a reality that wasn’t the dream, and started to complain about it. With this recipe, I had booked the victim seat in the first row. I was focusing on WHY and WHAT is missing, I had a handful of excuses. The conclusion was that’s not what is going to happen anyway, but was a good dream. And I was coming back to my individual activities feeling sometimes hopeless, other times helpless or just saying to myself get over it!
In that victim seat, there is no action taken – is an endless waiting time in a motionless expectation. In that victim seat there are an impressive number of hilarious excuses varying from karma, destiny, cat, pipes to people and events that prevented the accomplishment of whatever. In that victim seat there are expectations casted towards other people, and dependencies ingeniously defined in such a way that even the tiniest action would have to happen after something else and that’s the only way to do it. “I do that after you do that”, or “I do that if you do that” that’s the commonly heard lines. And “if you don’t do it, I won’t do it either” and is your fault that I did not. I am exempted of responsibility. This attitude is often marketed as a shared responsibility in couple or between siblings. But is not at all that. Is just a blame game that goes on and on, that drops anger, deception and misunderstanding in people’s hearts poisoning them slowly but surely every day. It is the paradise of the wounds as rejection, abandonment, injustice or betrayal. They have the fertile ground to install and comfort inside the poor victim soul. And that is heartbreaking and heartaking.
In my dream, I expected people to do something so I can do better, be better, feel better. Even in that ideal world, there was a hero who came and took me out of the suffering, who comforted me and helped me heal my wounds. It was someone else that recognized in me my own worth and gave me wings to fly high, above the skies.
Whereas in my real life, I projected that hero responsibility to people who loved me. That was selfish but that is the victim’s game. The heaviness of such responsibility was almost breaking them, so they could not endure that for too long. In the best case it just destroyed or eroded the connection.
There is no saviour, no hero who can or will save us from ourselves!
But that kind of hero who can and wants to save us from the abyss of our minds, does not exist. Sorry if I crush many dreams with this statement! There is no saviour who will come and solve your problems. There might be companions, yes! People who stand by your side and witness you changing; they are morally and/or physically there, creating a safety space for you transformation. But they don’t do the work. You do! They are just holding your space.
The transformation is yours alone!
The transformation journey is yours alone. The expectations are yours too. The hero role is solely yours. No one else fits in it. And the simplest thing you can do to save yourself from the (self) blame game is to take responsibility and start acting.
If you want to go out for a walk, just go – don’t expect anyone to do anything first, come home first, or to call you first, or to give you the blessing. Don’t blame them for your choice. Yes, it is your choice to go walking or wait for something. Chose the action and take responsibility for it!
Do you want to clean your house? Clean it! Don’t wait for the significant other to tell his/her how many dishes or laundry are waiting to be washed, what else in the house needs to be cleaned or organized, casting the blame shadow on them.
Do you want to wear the dress/pants/shoes? Wear them! Don’t wait for others validation, input or anything. Because you deserve to choose for yourself. Is not their fault if afterwards they don’t suit you! Deep down, they might not even care, so don’t make it their fault.
This is the key to end the blame game is: don’t create yourself unnecessary backlog of things to follow up on others, so you can do yours. Is exhausting, draining and at the end of the day it does not solve you any issue.
I often ask my people when they complain about problems: what is that you want? Do you want to solve the problem or to throw the blame upon another? And funny enough, sometimes I get the second answer.
So in my story, the day I asked myself what game I play, I chose to solve the situation. In that day I checked upon my reality. In that day, I was pretty impressed of myself and my accomplishments. Then I understood all that I do, think, believe has the power to take me to the ideal me. There are things I might change along the way, yes. They are just a choice away. I know them and I have all the means to perform any change I choose to. And I can even change my mind if that’s what I choose. It’s all on me. There is no more blame. There is no other hero in my story.
So, what game do you play?