- Guide, Relationship

Unrealistic Expectations In Your Relationship – Get to know about them

Many relationships/marriages stays shallow for the simple reason that there are unrealistic expectations from one or both partners. The picture we have in our head of how we think it should be can mess up a lot of things in our lives. It can even “kill” a relationship.

Realistic expectations are good

Let’s talk about expectations in general first. Expectations in life are good – it defines what you want and what you don’t want. Without expectations, we probably won’t get anywhere in life. But when the expectations become unrealistic, perhaps even naïve, you are set up for disappointment.

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Where do unrealistic expectations come from?

We can receive our unrealistic expectations from various sources such as romantic movies, magazines, TV and social media. We see the perfect couple gazing at each other and the world stops. A handsome man kisses a stunning woman with such passion you just wish you were the one being kissed. Or we watch the movie with the fairytale wedding followed by a pregnancy with the first baby. Happily ever after, or?

But we must remember that all these romantic movies, novels and stories only shows the good. The gazing may at times turn into an unfriendly stare; the kiss may not be that passionate sometimes and the baby will be fuzzy and cause sleepless nights that turn mum and dad into “monsters.” But that’s life! The beauty of life! There are ups and downs, happiness and sorrow, contentment and frustration, stress and rest, but through it all, there is a sense of belonging – it’s about our relationship, our love, and us.

Unrealistic expectations can also rise from negative experiences, from people we meet or just simply be ideas we started to believe. Examples could be, “Couples in great relationships never argue” or “It is easy to maintain any relationship.”

How can we avoid having unrealistic expectations?

Know that love is a commitment

Loving feelings will come and go, but when they go, it is the commitment that will make you stay together and grow deeper in your relationship. Like Thomas S. Monson said, “Choose your love. Love your choice.” It means that once you chose someone to be together with, you now need to make a decision to love that person that you chose. You need to constantly nurture and develop the love that you have for each other.

Understand that change is normal

All relationships go through various phases in life. It won’t be “honeymoon period” throughout your relationship/marriage. Instead, there will be phases where your love faces challenges, frustrations and other issues. When you understand this, you won’t be wondering whether you really loved each other in the first place. Instead, you will see every phase as an opportunity to grow.

Use the “double standard technique”

Clinical psychologist Selena C. Snow talks about the double standard technique. This involves imagining what you would say to a close friend/colleague/family member whom is having the same belief or idea as you. Usually you will be harder on yourself than others.

Let’s say you make a mistake at work. You tell yourself you’re a terrible employee. But if you imagine your friend telling you he/she made the mistake, the chance is high you would tell him/her, “It’s ok. Everyone makes mistakes.” You should tell yourself the same thing you would advise others.

Have realistic expectations

Your partner is not perfect and neither are you. There will be days when you don’t feel so much in love. You will get irritated with your partner or you may feel that he/she is not supportive or understanding enough. Your partner will not always say the right things and life won’t be smooth all the time. You may go through hardships in forms of sickness, unemployment, grief and loss, but crises can create opportunities for growth and making the relationship closer and more stable than before.

You can try to exchange your unrealistic expectations to realistic ones. If you have an unrealistic expectation of for example “my partner will always understand me”, you can exchange it to “my partner will often understand me” or “sometimes my partner may not understand me”, it’ll be easier when misunderstandings happens.

In conclusion, do your best to identify possible realistic expectations and then use the tips above to aid your love relationship to go deeper!

About Gregory

Gregory Post is a general news and feature writer of Untitled Magazine. Prior joining the company, he previously worked as a senior writer in different publishing companies in New York.
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