“A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving.” ~ Lao Tzu
What is love other than to care for another more than you care for yourself? What is love other than to put another’s needs ahead of your own? What is love other than to love without expectation?Advertising
Love is not reciprocal. Love is selfless. It is giving through sacrifice, expecting nothing. You may have dreams, plans and expectations coming into a relationship, but as the old boxing quote says: “Everyone has a plan until they are punched in the face.”
Instead of trying to force yourself into the fully-scripted roles of the perfect relationship, it’s advisable to let go of your expectations and dependence on your partner for affection and validation. Love that has no expectations cannot be betrayed. Betrayal is only possible when an exchange is expected.Advertising
So, for all that someone is, love them. Appreciate them for who they are rather than for how well they fit your pre-existing fantasies of how things should be. This way you’ll free your heart from any anger or frustration and begin to love unconditionally, even if it has to be love from afar.
When you love unconditionally without expecting anything, you’ll establish a special and rare relationship anchored on affection that is free and non-possessive. Your relationship will be pure and honest because you are not merely using another to satisfy general self-interested desires.Advertising
How often do we set the bar too high to reach and then use this as an excuse not to love completely? Jonathan Lockwood Huie said it right, “A wonderful gift may not be wrapped as you expect.” Let everyone be completely who they are. Don’t try to control or change them. Just love them – as they are – right now.
View people through the lens of compassion and acceptance. And then let circumstances freely and naturally resolve themselves into the most perfect outcome for all involved. Chances are those you love without expectation will dazzle you when they in turn begin to see you in your truest light.Advertising
Here are little ways to love without expectation.
- Love yourself first—totally and unequivocally. Be okay with yourself. If you can do that, then the need for others disappears.
- Believe and have faith in the good intentions of that person you love. There is good in everyone.
- Accept that person just as they are. People are not ours to own or rearrange.
- Smile, laugh and spend more time with that person, exploring new and challenging activities together. It builds intimacy.
- Protect and defend him or her always, including protecting their sense of dignity as human beings.
- Be truthful and honest in your interaction with them. Stop playing them.
- Voice your love and affection to them openly. Whisper in their ear how beautiful they are each morning.
- Express your affection physically. A simple kiss on the cheek or light touch on the shoulder can bring healing.
- Respect and treat that person like a gentleman or lady—with courtesy and dignity.
- Don’t lie or cheat on them. Stay faithful to your relationship until the end.
- Don’t whine, nag or complain all the time. It vexes the spirit.
- Don’t criticize them all the time. Instead, encourage and support them whenever you can.
- Show more compassion. We all need a little understanding from others.
- Surprise them with deeds of kindness when they least expect it.
- Be there for them when they need a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on or someone to uplift their spirits.
- Don’t compare your relationship with what others’ have.
- Stay calm, collected and keep working on making your relationship better.
- Cultivate a thick skin in the relationship, knowing that challenges are an inevitable part of life.
- Forget your personal investment in that person or in the relationship. That way you won’t expect a return on investment.
- Don’t blackmail or manipulate them to do your bidding.
- Don’t keep unnecessary secrets from them. Secrets indicate that there is a lack of trust and authenticity in the relationship.
- Listen to what they have to say with an open mind and a view to understand where they are coming from.
- Speak up in defense of that person you love and the integrity of your relationship when confronted by others.
- Talk openly, face-to-face with that person about what’s bothering you.
- Stop focusing on that person’s flaws or things that upset you about them too much. It is not worth it.
- Sit, discuss and plan for the future together.
- Don’t shift blame and heap it on them, rather take responsibility for your own actions.
- Apologize for your mistakes, learn from them and make amends where appropriate.
- Forgive offenses committed and move on. Life is too short to hold on to grudges and be unhappy.
- Celebrate that person when they are in your life, and let them go when they leave. Don’t force anyone to stay.
If you can do these things and have no expectation for any particular outcome, it is a glorious sign of emotional maturity. You become a better person and take the reins in the relationship.
Last Updated on February 11, 2020
17 Things Emotionally Strong People Don’t Do
Life is a series of stories, and each one of us has a unique story to tell. Billions upon billions of stories and no two are exactly the same. If the story of your life has been filled with more sad moments than happy ones, it’s time to change that. And the best place to start is within your head.
You have the power to create the life you want. One crucial skill that will help you get there is learning how to become emotionally strong. The good news is emotional strength is like a muscle: the more you use it, the stronger it becomes.
Once you believe you are strong emotionally, you will unconsciously act stronger than before and begin to take control over your emotional whims. – Senora Roy
In this article, you’ll learn how to be strong emotionally. Here’re 17 things emotionally strong people don’t do … so you can start creating the existence you’ve always imagined for yourself.
1. They don’t beg for attention.
Emotional strength means confidence, and confident people don’t need to constantly be the center of attention. They’re comfortable in their own skin.
2. They don’t allow others to bring them down.
Emotionally strong people ignore the haters and the naysayers. They weed these people out and surround themselves with positive people instead.
3. They don’t stop believing in themselves.
Somehow I can’t believe that there are any heights that can’t be scaled by a man who knows the secrets of making dreams come true. This special secret, it seems to me, can be summarized in four C’s:
They are curiosity, confidence, courage, and constancy, and the greatest of all is confidence.
When you believe in a thing, believe in it all the way, implicitly and unquestionable. – Walt Disney
Soak up these amazing words from Walt Disney. Because belief is the most essential quality of emotional strength.
4. They’re not afraid to love.
Love is the force that transforms and improves the Soul of the World. – Paulo Coelho
People who possess emotional strength have experienced heartbreak. But it doesn’t hold them back … it makes them stronger. Just because you’ve been hurt doesn’t mean you should shut love out of your life. Open up your heart and embrace vulnerability. The love you find will be worth everything you go through to get it.
5. They’re not afraid of slowing down.
Sometimes you need to take a step back and slow it down when you’ve been pushing yourself too hard. Having drive is great but not at the expense of your health and well-being. Allow yourself time for reflection and relaxation.
6. They refuse to be a victim of circumstance.
Being emotionally strong means refusing to make excuses. Leave the past behind you and focus on getting a little better every day.
7. They don’t have a problem saying no.
Saying no is one of the most important things you’ll ever learn how to do. Focus on your top priorities and say no to all the stuff that’s wasting your time.
8. They don’t back down from challenges.
Emotionally strong people see challenges as opportunities to grow and improve their life. Challenges happen for a reason. Only when we have overcome them will we understand why they were there.
9. They don’t do things they don’t want to do.
If you want to keep your emotional balance and sanity intact, do what you love. Get rid of baggage and commitments that are making you miserable.
10. They don’t forget that happiness is a decision.
Emotionally strong people know that happiness is a choice. They understand the things they need to really be happy. They choose a life of simplicity, productivity, and passion.
11. They don’t waste time.
Abraham Lincoln said,
“It’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.”
Emotionally strong folks don’t waste time doing mindless crap. They live mindfully in the present, enjoying every day as if it’s their last.
12. They aren’t afraid to ask for help.
Every single one of the great minds in history, from Einstein to Edison, had help along the way. You can’t do it all alone, and it takes an emotionally strong person to swallow their pride and ask for help.
13. They don’t hold themselves back.
Self-handicapping is a common trait among emotionally weak people. What this means is you make excuses and find ways to justify your inadequacies instead of finding ways to improve on them. If you want to change something, stop holding yourself back. Just start. Small victories lead to major changes.
14. They don’t mind working a little harder than everyone else.
The heights by great men reached and kept were not attained by sudden flight, but they, while their companions slept, were toiling upward in the night. – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Soak in these poetic words from Longfellow. Put in the work, and you’ll get the results you’re looking for.
15. They don’t overreact to things beyond their control.
Charles Swindoll said,
“Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.”
Think about how many times a day you overreact to things that really don’t matter. When you start to feel your blood boil, take a deep breath and ask yourself, “Is this really worth getting stressed out over?” Ninety-nine percent of the time, you’ll realize the answer is no.
16. They aren’t content with a mediocre life.
Emotionally strong people don’t settle for mediocrity. They strive to achieve greatness.
17. They never, ever give up.
Being emotionally strong means staring adversity in the face, learning from your mistakes, and living to fight another day. I’ll leave you with this inspiring quote from Harriet Beecher Stowe:
When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you, till it seems as though you could not hang on a minute longer, never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.
Featured photo credit: Conner Ching via unsplash.com