I adopted a puppy five days ago. I have to admit it was fun starting a new adventure!
On our first day together, this beautiful three-year-old girl recently named Tonza pointed out something to me: how strongly expectations will influence a new relationship, any new relationship.
When adopting a new pet, one may have some preconceived expectations about their new best friend and companion. I know I did! Typical expectations that people may have of a new dog include:
• Instantly become friends with the new partner.
• Develop immediate mutual loyalty and trust.
• Expect the dog to meet certain standards of behavior.
• To start enjoying sharing the good times, start when you leave the animal shelter.
Along the way, these are reasonable expectations.
But every dog, like you and me and every other human being, is different with its own characteristics, circumstances, and provisions. Each will react differently to the same environment and situation. Each person or animal has a different past, full of baggage and challenges. The bottom line is that your new friend has to learn to live with you just as much as you have to learn to live with him. As in any relationship, you will find that at some times your expectations are exceeded while at other times they are not fully met.
It is interesting to note that human relations experts say that the biggest problem in any relationship today is expectations. Whether it’s a romantic, friendship, or professional relationship, we often wait too long too fast. And that can spell disaster.
So how can you avoid waiting too soon? How do you know when to hold on and when to let go? Experts say it all comes down to a few old-fashioned statutes:
1. Don’t rush, but let the relationship slowly deepen.
2. Be open to those who don’t fit your “ideal” without sacrificing your standards.
3. Think about what you bring to the relationship, not what you get out of it.
4. Solve the problems to have a stronger relationship in the end.
5. Be patient!
Managing your expectations will free you from getting caught up in heartbreak, frustration, and heartbreak. Relationships don’t always go as planned, but if we can learn to cope with our expectations, we can learn to make the most of every relationship around us.
I am very grateful for this reminder from my new partner Tonza about expectations. I hope to have more learning moments with him.
What is the most memorable lesson your pet has taught you?