In the last post, we saw how we forget thankfulness because of our tendency to be overly cautious in order to avoid trauma. In this post, we will explore another factor that hinders our ability to embrace gratitude. And that is expectations!
We crave more; we are never satisfied with what we get. Here are a few examples of this fleeting sense of gratitude:
"I'm grateful that my husband cooks well, but I wish he would do it more often without me having to ask him!"
"I'm happy that my mother-in-law helps with the daily chores, but I wish she would appreciate my help more!"
"That colleague helped me meet the project deadline, but I have helped him numerous times, whereas he has only helped me once."
"That restaurant service is excellent but they are expensive. I wish they lowered their prices and gave the same service."
We live in a social environment where we often come to each other's rescue. However, we often fail to appreciate it when someone genuinely (or sometimes selfishly) makes our lives easier or helps us achieve our goals. We always have preconceived notions about everything. Even when someone unexpectedly lends a hand, we anticipate their behavior first and then judge the person. If things go as we expected we wish for more, if things don't as we expected we despise the help. We are never satisfied with what we get or how people behave towards us - especially when they show kindness!
In order to truly accept help from others, we must learn to be grateful. We need to recognize how their simple act of kindness has affected our lives, even in small ways. While it's true that someone else might have been there to assist us if not for that particular person, it is undeniable that someone has made our lives easier. If we appreciate it, it benefits us first. So, if we let go of our expectations, we can cultivate a gratitude quality that will endure forever!