Because you don't have to put yourself on hold while raising your family

Why we need to let go of expectations

let it goI’m sure I’m not the only one who’s living the Frozen soundtrack at the moment.

The Disney movie songs are on such high rotation in our household that I fall asleep singing about a snowman wanting to see summer… and wake up singing about a snowman wanting to see summer!

It’s big.

So perhaps it’s the soundtrack running through my mind this weekend that has lead me to tonight’s reflections. A subconscious mantra that I’ve been repeating over and over.

Let it go.

(I apologise to all the new Mamas reading this that don’t have older children obsessed with this latest Disney offering. I promise that will be the last reference to a song you don’t know. Well, almost.)

Here’s the thing: it’s a really great mantra. Especially for us Mamas.

How much of our lives are caught up in expectations at the moment? How much is stuck on what we think our babies should be doing, our children should be doing, even our husbands should be doing!

We read the book, we set the plan, we decide we want our lives to look a certain way… and we hold onto that vision, come what may.

But the tighter you grip, the more you suffocate.

Whether it’s your expectations, a routine, or an outcome – the harder you hold on, the harder it becomes.

Think about labour – the more your body holds onto fear, the more painful and slower the progress of childbirth. A body holding onto expectations and outcomes is more rigid, harder to move with the flow, closed.

But, when you just breathe, release your body and mind to the wonders of mother nature, and be open to whatever comes your way, childbirth progresses like nature intended.

It’s the same with our minds. The more we hang on tightly to the idea of how our children should be behaving or how we should be feeling, the more we block the flow of the good stuff.

The more we are closed.

When I get stuck in the controlling mindset, I can feel it in my throat. As I try to set a plan for my week, or focus on anything that’s rigid, my neck begins to tighten. My jaw sets, my tongue pushes against my teeth.

Tightness. Closed. Hanging onto outcomes again.

I particularly notice this with my older girls – when I’m getting frustrated with how slow they are moving, or their lack of table manners, or …. whatever! My body physically tightens.

And what happens when something is too rigid? It breaks instead of bends.

It doesn’t flow with the knocks and demands of motherhood; it cracks at every little turn.

So here’s the thing: we have to start letting go of the plans. Relax our attachment to milestones our babies should be reaching. Release expectations of how our bodies should be looking.  We don’t need to have everything figured out. Like childbirth – as long as we have a healthy mama and baby in the end, all is good.

It’s the same now.

Whenever I notice myself getting hung up on controlling things in my life or around me, I start with the physical – relax my jaw, lower my shoulders, breathe out.

Then, I remind myself to just let it go. The tighter I hold, the more it will break.

Just let it go.

And yes, it usually then launches into the soundtrack again.

Much love,

x

About Amy

I’ve learnt that parenting is actually the BEST time of your life to learn about yourself. Read more about me here.

Lovely comments

  1. “release expectations” love this phrase!

    • Thanks Rose – it’s beautiful, isn’t it? You can almost do it physically with your arms… release expectations! (When no-one is around, of course!) x

  2. Carla Balsar says:

    Hi Amy. This post is one of your best for me. It resonated on so many levels, from the weight of expectation I carry to that song! Let it go! We are of to spotlight this week for material to make a Frozen costume. Wish me luck!

    • Thank you Carla – I’m so thrilled it resonated with you. And you are BRAVE tackling the Frozen costume! Hope it went well, and there weren’t too many expectations!! x

  3. Thanks Amy, I need to take heed to your advice. I let things build up and am a huge worrier.
    PS. My 3 year old loves Frozen – what a great story

  4. Great post, true of broader life in general.

Trackbacks

  1. […] Why we need to let go of expectations – written by Amy @ Seek Act Love With the soundtrack to Frozen running through her mind, Amy Taylor-Kabbaz realises that the more we hang onto our expectations as Mamas, the tougher our days. Follow: Facebook […]

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