A little while ago, in the course of a deep conversation with a coaching client of mine, we were contemplating the life changing habit of creating agreements vs having expectations, in ANY form of relationship.
Seeing my client’s reaction to our exploration prompted me to share this with you.
Choosing deliberately to create agreements is a healthy, sustainable, evolutionary way to nurture and solidify any relationship.
The concept is made very clear by Steve Chandler, in several of his books.
Unfortunately it seems that by default we tend to have a lot of unspoken expectations and let them determine the quality of our relations.
It’s a risky business.
When I don’t communicate clearly with someone else to establish a clear agreement and instead, entertain all kinds of ideas about how people should act, and how they should know better and how when they fail to fit my expectations it means they don’t love or respect me, I set myself up for burning disappointment and most likely a never ending pattern of misunderstandings and grudges.
We are not mind readers, it’s that simple.
So the simplest most efficient, fairest way to nurture a relationship is to create agreements, and to revise them if necessary, with a new agreement at another time, in a respectful loving manner.
Looks simple enough, doesn’t it?
But how often do we miss the opportunity to do so, and slip into the old pattern of expecting something to be understood though unsaid, or someone to respond to what we did not ask?
Many times. Now, when we become aware of this, IF we apply it in real life (understanding it is not enough, action is required), it transforms our ways to relate and communicate with each other.
It’s a given. Works every time.
In our conversation, my client and I went a few layers deeper, and looked at how this principle of creating agreements vs expectations can transform our relationship to OURSELVES, and… to our own BODY.
Let’s say I want to change my life in some way.
Something between me and I. Nobody else involved.
I might take a decision in my head (a resolution, like on January 1st…) and EXPECT that I’ll follow through…
I expect that because I see the use of it, and I say that I want it, I’ll do what it takes.
How does that work most of the time for you?
In my experience, when I do that I fail miserably.
But if I take the time to feel my way into the change I want to bring, and create an agreement between my thinking (my intellect) and my emotional self, (my-always-ready-to-return-to-default-good-old-self), if I take the time to really create a livable, agreable, acceptable agreement there, I up my chances to succeed considerably.
Chances I’ll feel understood and loved, my inner dialogue will be gentle, and I’ll make sure to provide myself with support, vigilance, compassion and all together high quality nurturance to help me through.
How wonderful is that?
Now let’s take this one step further and apply it to our relationship with our own body.
We are not our body.
We do live inside a body.
Therefore we are in a relationship.
We do have a relationship with our incredibly intelligent body, and it’s often a pretty poor one.
For what I can observe in myself and others, we live MOSTLY from expectation, in this particular relationship with our body.
And it doesn’t serve us well.
We expect our body to be healthy, to carry on, to be of service, at all times, while living at any place on a spectrum that goes from mostly oblivious mistreatment to at best applying accepted rules of wellness. From food to drugs, to exercise, to breathing, relaxing, sleeping, using substances, everything we put our body through or put through our body, influences its ability to auto regulate and serve us at best.
What became visible, in this conversation about agreement vs expectation was that even when we are aiming for wellness, in a conscious way, we tend to expect a result when we apply a regimen, when we endorse a wellness trend, when we create a new habit.
We expect that change to make our body do better, feel better, heal better…
And sometimes it doesn’t.
Let’s try to create an agreement. If I sit quietly and ask my body what it needs, literally, we often get a response through the magic of intuition.
If we follow that intuition, chances are there will be an improvement.
If we do not receive a clear intuitive response, making sure to carefully bring new habits and changes in a great state of awareness, of listening to the body response, with the INTENTION to create an agreement, instead of presuming that we KNOW what’s best for it, will for sure improve our relationship to our physical self. Instead of taking decisions from logic, in a linear way, from our thinking mind, it is very useful to quiet the mind for a moment and FEEL what our body would agree to.
And go from there. Gently.
See what happens.
Keep listening… And update the agreement when it feels like it’s time to.
What works outward works also inward.
When we agree, we strengthen.
To your relations… Take care.
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