Back to School at FamilyEducation.com
Home > Kids > Children's General Health > Mental Health > Taming Self-Expectations
|

Taming Self-Expectations

  • Try humor: Exaggerate your expectation to the point of absurdity. Make a caricature of yourself. Imagine how you would look or what you would say if you were a character in a cartoon, sitcom, comic strip.
  • Try compassion: See your self-expectation from the perspective of a very trusted and loving friend, teacher or family member. What does this compassionate person say to you? Try saying it to yourself.
      Or try seeing your expectation as if it was someone else's – someone you care about. What would you say to that person? Try saying it to yourself.
      Or have a compassionate conversation with the part of you that is holding on so tightly. Lovingly acknowledge it for trying so hard to...be more this, less that, etc.
  • Try expanding time: Ask yourself, "Will this matter 10 years from now?"
  • Try expanding space: Look, even briefly, at a star-filled night sky, or the vastness of an ocean or prairie or clear blue sky. See if your expectation loosens.
  • Try breathing: Feel where and how you are holding this expectation in your body. Imagine breathing into it, around it. Let your breath make space around the tightness, helping it to soften. Or just take three slow, deep breaths.
  • Try coming up with a reminder phrase that you can say to yourself: You might tell yourself, for example, "Don't sweat the small stuff – and it's all small stuff." Or you might say, "Que sera sera; whatever will be will be." If you can sing your phrase, all the better! Or, if you prefer more Buddhist phrasing, try these: "Things are as they are," or "This is what is."
  • Try telling yourself, "I'll still be a good person": "...even if I don't get the oven cleaned before the in-laws arrive," or "even if I go to bed and read instead of cleaning up the kitchen." Have a friend remind you that you're still a good person "even if _____________ (fill in the blank)," when you forget it or doubt it.
  • Try asking yourself, "Who says?": With a little introspection, you might trace your self-expectation to someone else (Mom? Dad? The religious or other belief system you grew up with?), or simply to one of your own internal voices. Even if you can't identify the source of your expectation, asking the question provides a pause and the possibility of choice about how and whether to meet that expectation.


|

Excerpted from Finding the Deep River Within: A Woman's Guide to Recovering Balance and Meaning in Everyday Life. Copyright� 2006 by Abby Seixas. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Jossey-Bass, a Wiley Imprint. For more information, see http://www.deepriverwithin.com.


August 29, 2014



Eating a colorful diet or fruits and veggies helps ensure your child is getting the nutrients he needs to keep his brain sharp while at school. Aim to pack three or more different colored foods in his lunch (or for snack) every day.


stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

get ready for school!

We’ve got your
shopping list,
lunch menu,
and more.

GO

highlights

Join BIC on our mission to save handwriting and Fight For Your Write! Writing helps kids become better readers, boosts their confidence and sparks their creativity. Visit BICFightForYourWrite.com to sign our petition to save handwriting!

11 Coolest Lunch Boxes for Kids
Send your child's lunch to school in style! Check out our picks for the 11 best lunch boxes with great features from BPA-free accessories to spill-resistant fabric.

7 Important Back-to-School Safety Tips
Follow these back-to-school safety tips to make sure your child stays safe on the way to school, in the classroom, and while on the playground.

Kindergarten Readiness App Wins Gold
Our Kindergarten Readiness app won the Gold Award of Excellence in the educational category at the 2014 Communicator Awards. This valuable checklist comes with games and activities to help your child practice the essential skills she needs for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!