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Saturday, June 25, 2011

Saturday Love: You're Worth It - Unrealistic Expectations

The jewel of wisdom du jour...“Thought Before Action”

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Last week we spoke about learning to let go of past relationships, in order to not have a negative impact on a future relationship. One way in which not letting go of the past can have an impact on the present or future is that your thoughts or hang-ups on someone from your past can cause you to place unrealistic expectations on someone new.

Unrealistic expectations that we may place on others usually begin when we take our own personal ideals, standards, and views on things and project them onto other people, or when we needlessly compare a new love interest with those from our past. Let’s focus on the unnecessary comparisons for now.

Imagine if your new boyfriend/girlfriend continually made references to his ex-girlfriend that he spent 5 years with. Talking about the things they used to do, the fun they had together, etc. How would you feel about that situation? Now imagine that this same partner, upon asking if you wanted to see a particular movie or go to a particular restaurant and you said no, this person that you have feelings for says something along the lines of…"I remember my ex and I used to see movies like that or go to that restaurant." Isn’t that going to put a damper on your new relationship?

Well with that said, it’s important for us to always remember to not needlessly compare our new significant other to someone from our past. We shouldn’t be heard uttering the words, “well my ex used to” or “my ex would’ve never done something like that”. Those words are usually the beginning of the end of a relationship. Why? Because at that point, your new partner feels they’ll never live up to the level of your ex, because you’ve put them on such a high pedestal and apparently…you’re never going to take them off of it. This is like trying to force a square peg into a round hole…it’s just not going to work.

Bottom line…don’t assume that your new boyfriend/girlfriend is into the same things your ex was. Don’t assume that acting a certain way that your ex found acceptable is going to be ok with your new partner. And last but certainly not least, try to put yourself in the other person’s shoes. If you they had been in a longstanding relationship, and continually compared you in every way (physically, emotionally, etc.) to their ex, wouldn’t you want to cut ties and move on to someone who’d really appreciate you for who you are; and not to look at you as someone they can try to mold into being just like their ex…who obviously they hold too dear as their ideal partner. Eventually, your new partner will find themselves climbing your expectations ladder and they’ll realize they’ll never be able to climb high enough for you.

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