© 2016 Kebba Buckley Button, MS, OM. World Rights Reserved.
How great are your expectations of most people you know? And what causes you to expect more or less of anyone? If you meet a 4-year-old child, do you expect the same of that person as you do of his or her parent? It is natural to look down to the child’s height, notice the child is young, and to relax your expectations of the little one’s language, cognition, and ability to respond to you in detail.
It’s natural, too, to associate height with age. We are accustomed to people starting life small, learning to stand, and “growing up”, getting taller as we age. So we expect more of taller people, because that fits with our experience that taller people have more years of life and more maturity. We can, however, make mistakes with this principal, expecting an unusually tall child to have the capabilities of an older person. My own father was 6 foot 6 inches by the time he was 12 years old. People expected him to have the maturity of an adult and to bear adult responsibilities at that tender age. It was very hard on him. He was the target of Expectation Stress.
Several reality TV shows now feature families with “little people”, adults and children with dwarfism. Do these people with half-size bodies have half the brains, half the capabilities, half the heart of full-height people? Clearly not. Especially fascinating is a couple who live in Houston, Texas. Their show is called simply, “The Little Couple”. The wife is a medical doctor involved in child oncology and emergency planning at a large hospital. The husband owns a pet-gear business. Both are intelligent, attractive, well-spoken, and passionate about matters of the heart. Each has a compelling personality and a bubbling sense of humor. The thing is, she is 32 inches tall, and he is 40 inches tall. I wonder how often people have taken them for less-than-adult in their capabilities?
Last year, I caught myself commenting on a 3-month-old baby’s personality. I said, “what a sweet little soul!” The baby’s body was certainly small. But was its soul? So how does this size thing work with souls? Could souls grow bigger as we mature? Do souls sometimes expand?
Nick Lake wrote,
It’s like she had a soul too big for her. It filled her to the brim till there was no more space, so it flowed out through her eyes.
Mahatma Gandhi said,
When I admire the wonders of a sunset or the beauty of the Moon, my soul expands in the worship of the Creator.
So what if we simply assume that every soul is precious? What if we assume that each person has worth, heart, thoughts, and cares? And that each person is worthy of our regard until we have experience to the contrary? What if we stop being stuck in Expectation Stress and be open to learning who each person is, and what is reasonable to expect of them, regardless of height, age, and apparent soul size? Life doesn’t run on cut-and-dried rules all the time. Perhaps our best expectation is that the infinite variations in life are best met with openness to the new, the novel, and the what-is-true-now. Release your Expectation Stress, and you’ll be centered in Upbeat Living!
- Kebba Buckley Button is a stress management expert. She also has a natural healing practice and is an ordained minister. She is the author of the award-winning book, Discover The Secret Energized You (http://tinyurl.com/b44v3br), plus the 2013 book, Peace Within: Your Peaceful Inner Core, Second Edition(http://tinyurl.com/mqg3uvc ). Her newest book is Sacred Meditation: Embracing the Divine, available through her office. Just email SacredMeditation@kebba.com.
- For an appointment or to ask Kebba to speak for your group: firstname.lastname@example.org .