Turn Your Expectations Into Appreciation!
We all have multiple personalities. Or at the very least, we have multiple aspects of our personalities. There’s a part of us that knows it’s destined for greatness, that sees others shining their light in the world and that knows we have our own light to shine and gifts to give. There’s a part of us that’s fearless, that’s audacious and that’s creatively invincible. Yes, there’s that part of us that dreams big and that sees nothing but possibilities and opportunities when it looks out into the world and looks ahead in life. There’s also a part of us that doesn’t believe we’re worthy of what we truly desire, that’s afraid to really put it out there and that fears failure and rejection. That same part of us tells us all kinds of lies and defeating stories about why we can’t, why we shouldn’t and why we will never realize our dreams or become the person we wish to be.
Last month, I attended Tony Robbins’ incredible event “Date With Destiny” and I got to come face to face with many aspects of my personality. One of the biggest lessons I learned about myself is that I can be a big BRAT sometimes. Yup, it’s true.
Growing up, I was always showered with love, told how amazing I was and spoiled with everything I could ask for. In many ways, that’s a beautiful thing and I will likely take a similar approach with my children one day, with one small refinement. But I’ll get to that in a minute.
The most common way that the brat shows up in me is with a “what can I get?” view of the world and a sense of entitlement. Another way of saying this is that I would look around me with nothing but EXPECTATIONS instead of APPRECIATION. Operating from this place, no amount of love, praise, or success was ever enough to fill me. And what’s even worse is that it resulted in a rather selfish disposition to life and people. Despite being what I considered to be a loving and giving person, I realized that even when I was giving, loving or being generous, I was doing so with the intent of getting something in return.
This revelation cracked me open and smacked right across the face. It took me hearing someone else admit that they had been selfish before I really allowed the ah-ha to hit me as well. But when it did, it changed everything.
It’s now been a month since that insight and I can honestly say that it has changed me in a profound way. For one, I named that part of myself that’s always thinking about itself and that’s always looking to see what it can get. I call him Narci-Christopher. By the way, that’s the same part of me that has a boatload of insecurities, that tells me I can’t, that doubts my dreams and my abilities, that sabotages my success and that looks at life as though there’s never enough. When I catch Narci-Christopher in action, or become aware of some his usual thoughts or emotions, I consciously choose to change my state and change the channel and tune in to the voice of my higher self, whom I call C+.
C+ is the part of me that knows I’m capable of greatness and destined to play a big game in this world and live the life of my dreams. C+ also includes the audacious, spunky and sometimes bad ass kid that I once was, and the courageous, free, masculine man that I am at my core. These are parts of myself that I’d lost touch with for a long time but I was able to reclaim them at DWD.
The biggest difference of all though is that C+ looks at the world and asks “What can I give?” and is focused on appreciation versus expectations. This small but significant shift alone is a game-changer. Living life from this place, we find ourselves giving of our love, of our time, of our energy, and of ourselves, not to get anything in return but with an understanding that the real joy and gift is in the giving. I’ve been practicing this with my family and friends and it has created a radically different experience. Love is flowing more freely and I’ve begun to understand what being of service actually means. What’s most amazing to me is that this way of being makes true fulfillment possible where it would have never been possible before.
Shifting my focus from expectations to appreciation, I’ve become present to how truly blessed I am and realize just how much abundance there is all around me, as well as within me. When we have such rigid expectations of how things “should” be, there are so many ways for those expectations to go unmet, creating an experience of frustration or disappointment. When we choose to look with thankful eyes and see what we have, what we’ve been given, what is rather than what isn’t, happiness and fulfillment are instantaneous and always available.
So what about you? Can you identify some of the different aspects of your personality? What would you name them? Most importantly, what would life be like if you asked what you can give instead of what you can get and turned your expectations into appreciation?
Much love, C+ Written for The Daily Love (Dec. 30th, 2012)