I'm reminded of this at this time of the year because it is a season so full of expectations.It is supposed to be the season of giving, yet we look into many vacant, tired eyes and people walk around like zombies going from one thing to the next.
I have both lowered and raised my expectations this year. I have decided what will be, will be. I can do what I can and those that help can help to the best of their ability and not to the standard I usually set. Let's face it, when we ask someone to do something for us it is to do it the way we want it done.
I have raised expectations in that I am feeling so much better that I can be more present and involved and have things the way I want them without as much stress. But that didn't come easy. It has been a hard fought battle, one with myself. I'm the type of person who like to start and finish something in one session, no matter how I'm feeling. That has left me strained, stressed and in pain in the past. I know it, but I have done it to myself time and time again. And I know all of you have done so as well. It's how most of us are hard wired. So I've retired my thinking and therefore my actions this year are more reasonable.
It started with Christmas baking which I began in early November. It consisted of gathering the ingredients one day. Making the dough the next then refrigerating it until I was ready to bake the cookies. It worked! The world didn't come to an end and when Meghan arrived there was a bunch of great cookies to eat and then lots to decorate and give away. I felt good about having things somewhat the way I wanted them and I wasn't spent trying to get it that way.
I did the same with shopping. If I was having a good day I shopped for a set period of time and came home to rest. In previous years I would go out shop, come home and wrap it all up and take on another project. I was setting myself up to fail. I have to say the easiest and most shopping was done online this year. I had help with the wrapping and it went very smoothly.
That's just some examples, but there were many and I have to say I have experienced way less pain this year than in previous years at this time. So lowering expectations of others is key but not until you have raised expectations of yourself to do what is best for you!