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Managing Expectations For Those We Love

It’s a strange thing, but this happens all the time. We tend to get angry more easily with those people close to us, especially our family members. While we can put on a smiling face with others, we may yell and shout to our wife and our children. Have you ever wonder why?

Firstly, it’s because we let down our guard when we are with people we are close to. We need not put on our mask and act like a nice person. We can be who we are. But this also signals an issue we may need to deal with. This means that we are not transformed from within. The public self is different from the private self. We may have to work more to build our inner character rather than just suppressing our inner self.

Secondly, our expectations are higher for those closer to us. We set a higher standard for them than others. We expect our spouse to understand us in every of our moves and we also expect our children to be more obedient and nicer than the others. As such, when our spouse read our signals wrongly, we flare up. When our children go against us, we get upset and angry. Perhaps, it is time for us to manage our expectations.


Problem Free?

As the society advances, we work hard to prevent unnecessary hiccups in life. We ensure our transport system goes well, our company runs well and our education system functions well. While it is good to get these systems up and running well, we must remember that they do fail us at times no matter what. There is nothing fool proof and there is no Titanic that even God cannot sink. We need to be realistic about life.

But what is more crucial is how much we can tolerate such inconvenience. We can end up having such a high expectation of the systems that we start to complain whenever something goes wrong. We become intolerant to others’ failures. We think that they should get the job done well. They shouldn’t allow mishaps to happen at all. It’s their responsibility and it’s all their fault.

Secondly, we can become superior. In all these fault picking, we see ourselves as superior to others. We think they should serve us because we pay for the service.

Thirdly, we become inflexible. In a sense, we are handicapped. We do not know how to go round the problem. We do not know how to live with problems. Problems becomes something bad. But this is not necessarily true. The Bible tells us that God uses problems to build us up. Problems can train our patience and shape our character.

All these can have implications on our family. Our children are looking at us all the time. They see how we react to things in life. They would end up expecting us to solve all their problems. We become their servants rather than parents. They would not know how to solve their life problems and expect everything to be perfect. Dear parents, it’s alright to meet with problems, let your children solve theirs too. Let them face the real world and be shaped to be a strong yet flexible generation.