The Burden of Expectations

They often say in life, your greatest enemies are not the ones who live around you to put you down, but it is the demons that reside inside your head. You are what you are today because of the greatest gift given to mankind, a mindset and a thought process. We as humans are mere puppets dancing to the strings of our feelings and hopes. There exists an entire different universe in our minds, which is constantly fighting a battle trying to decipher between the right and the wrong. And to top it, everyone has their own set of beliefs and expectations. And expectations, as they say, is the root cause of all evil. And more often than that they say, you will end up very disappointed if you grow up thinking that everyone is going to have the same heart as you. A line so simple, yet so insightful and powerful.

For the only thing that can affect you in ways undefined, and is the underlying foundation of all those sorrows and tough times, are expectations. Expectations out of your own self, or even worse, expectations out of those around, or the worst of all, expectations of out those for whom you are proudly willing to burn those bridges for. Expectations break your heart piece by piece, when they’re not even understood, let alone be fulfilled. There are people in life, who give too much of their soul to someone, and expect a soul in return. But two people never think alike and an eye for an eye is not everyone’s philosophy in life. But people who are kind always believe there’s a good in others, and those who have been hurt in life let go of the idea of trust altogether. That’s why often those who love the hardest end up being wounded and cut through the deepest.

Often, the biggest mistake we end up making is believing that you’re going to get exactly what you give. While the probability of getting less in return is always more, but lucky are those who have their expectations surpassed and filled above all. We often end up going great lengths for certain people presuming that they would do the same for us if the tables ever turned. But people define priorities with infinite combinations, and the one you rank up as the first may not even give you a five or a nine. As a result of these expectations, we end up dwelling deeper into ourselves to find faults within us. We sink deeper into the well of over thinking and let go of the peace inside us. And this entire act of expecting and being let down ends only in one way, being crippled into feelings of loneliness and destruction of your own self-worth. For it is a tendency of the human life, to feel unworthy when you see yourself not being loved in the way you would like love to be defined.

But is life so unimportant to be defined by things that never came your way? Absolutely not. The other aspects of life are to move on or to reform. To move on from things and people who make you feel low, to things and people who help you grow or most importantly, to a version of yourself that requires no sort of approvals validation. Or to transform yourself into engaging yourself with selflessness, doing away with the concept of returns and believing in the power of endless giving. For you may have many more lives yet to live, but the one in the present deserves to be lived happily and to the fullest.

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The One who Loves “More”

They say in life, your greatest wealth is not the that money you earn or the things that you own, but it is the relations that you build. If you have even one person who will stand by you through the ups and downs,highs and lows, then you’ve earned success in this game called life. Relations are the foundations and pillars of survival in the journey of life. There are some relations that we’re gifted by blood, and others that we build through the feelings of love and trust. But more than anything, a relation is a special bond of your emotional vulnerability that you share with a person. The extent to which you expose the colours of your inner self, is what defines the relation between the two.

What we grew up hearing was that mutual effort, trust and respect is required to make any relation work. But as we grew up and came face to face with reality, the harsh truth of life started to dwell upon us. We realised that firstly, no two relations can ever be the same, and secondly, there is hardly anything that is put in equally by two people. There isn’y a concept of half and half, there is always an unequal ratio. There is always the one who is more loving , or more sacrificing, or putting in more efforts than the other into the relation in order to sustain it. And emotionally, one of the most devastating things you could do to yourself is to be the one more giving. If what you give is what you get, why is the one putting in more left with a void of unhappiness?

But one thing which undoubtedly true and absolutely unquestionable, is the fact that this class of “more” people possess an exceptional amount of courage and strength. On the face of it they may seem weak for holding on too much, but they are the ones who learn the art of giving and expecting nothing in return at a very early stage, without being taught. They know the pain of hidden desires, yet they act as shields and mentally protect the other. They know how to suppress their own feelings in order to deal with someone’s emotional unavailability. And most importantly, they know how to not give up even when they see little or no light from the other end of the tunnel.

Being the more loving one in any relation is heart breaking, but it is also an act of great selflessness, something we find rather rarely with mankind today. It depicts how relations and people are valued over the feeling of always being taken for granted, and also how love overpowers ego. And nothing deserves more appreciation and respect than such courage, because no regret is greater than the loss of something so irreplaceable.

 

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Love and other Norms

As we walk along this journey called life and take steps into this world, as we see and hear with gifted senses, and feel by touch, there is one thing which always stays with us, this thing called love. A source of happiness to some and the cause of the greatest pain to others, we often forget that love is not bound by any limits, it is present in every piece around us.

Love – on the face of it is just a four letter word, but it can wrap the entire world in itself by the immense power it contains. It’s not just a feeling, it’s an emotional aspect, a belief and a route to freedom. But the question arises, why do we have to look for it in others? In other people or other things? Why don’t we turn to our own selves when someone mentions the word love? In today’s world, when more and more people around you are sinking into anxiety and depression, have we really forgotten the concept of self-love?

By all means and honesty, this has never been our fault. Right from our childhood, we have been subjected to the norms of beauty and behavioural standards, success, and the definition of an ideal life. You’ve been told how much you should weigh, how your body approach towards life is careless, that your color is too dark or whitish, you’re not too good in studies or sports, or your goals are not acceptable. From the time we start growing up, we’ve been subjected to shaming in one way or the other, and we too have shamed others willingly or unwilling. And the result of this? We’ve grown up with insecurities beyond repair. We’ve been compared so much, that we forgot how to be ourself and began trying to match those standards somehow or the other. Instead of striving to be a better version of ourselves, we have been striving to match those pre determined standards. Ask the child who grew up with complexes, how he always turned to others instead of the mirror for acceptance?

The problem is deep-rooted, but it is not incurable. It’s about taking pride in your own self, having the self-confidence and choosing not to owe anyone an explanation. If you don’t find a fault in yourself, then who is anyone to criticise you? If you’re happy and content with your present situation, who is anyone to question your hard work?  Your happiness is all about you and only you. Choose yourself and love who you are. Self love is one of the most liberating and empowering feelings in this world. It is the most effective antidote for the worldly diseases of our generation.

Embrace yourself and believe in yourself before it’s too late, before the power of regret becomes greater than the power of acceptance.