#82 - Managing Expectations Wisely (Just in Time for Valentine's Day)

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By Vicki Tidwell Palmer, LCSW, Vicki Tidwell Palmer, and LCSW. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

A lot of listener questions I get have embedded expectations in them. And while not all expectations are bad, they can definitely get us into trouble. Valentine’s Day is a great example of this. You may be expecting your partner to give you flowers or show up for you in a certain way, but unless you’ve expressed this to your partner or you're not willing to take action on what you have power over, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment and disconnection. Tune in to learn how to manage expectations and avoid feeling let down!

Biggest Takeaways From Episode #82:

  • When we’re unhappy with the behavior of another person, it’s often because we have an expectation about what they should (or shouldn’t) be doing. But not all expectations are bad; when they’re used wisely, they can be powerful and positive.
  • There’s an important difference between expectations and contracts or agreements. If you have an agreement or contract with another person, not living up to it is a boundary violation. However, it’s not a boundary violation if someone doesn’t meet an unspoken expectation.
  • When we have unfounded expectations, we’ll often be frustrated or upset when our expectation isn’t met. But if you don’t ask for what you want, you lose your right to complain when you don’t get it.
  • If you believe that another person should give you something that you could give to yourself, but you refuse to do so, you have made getting the other person to do what you want them to do more important than getting what you wanted.

Highlights from Episode #82:

  • Welcome to this episode of the Beyond Bitchy podcast, which is here just in time for Valentine’s Day! [00:40]
  • Vicki defines what expectations are, and explains how we can get in trouble with them. [03:45]
  • [07:27]
  • Your word can establish a reasonable expectation that can cause an understandable upset even when you don’t have an agreement with another person. [11:42]
  • What happens when we have unfounded expectations? [14:34]
  • Vicki points out that each of us is the only person responsible for getting our wants or needs met. [18:21]
  • Are all expectations bad? Vicki explains why they’re not, and talks about a useful way to utilize expectations. [22:22]
  • Vicki talks more about Valentine’s Day and expectations, and offers a specific exercise for listeners. [28:29]

Links and Resources:

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