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  • Dr Krisha Panchal

How should couples set expectations to avoid any mental health hazards?

Most relations are acquaintances, friends, and family. Apart from this relationships between couples lie somewhere between friends and family. Among friends and family, the limitations, as well as expectations, are well understood with the passage of time. But among couples who have been together for quite some time their expectations from one other are not much clear which may be due to lack of communication or prior experience.

It is necessary to know how much to expect from your partner which might sound odd but it is essential to sustain the relationship and decrease the incidence of mental stress. In order to explain ‘the optimum’ it is important to know the extremes first.

The prozone state is where you expect less. For example: not being your partner’s priority over anything and being fine with the same.

The postzone state is where you expect a lot. For example: if your partner is an army officer and you expect them to be with you always and answer you throughout the clock that’s postzone or over expectation.

The optimum expectation isn’t ideal for everyone. It varies among the couples depending on their occupation, commitment towards one another, the nature of both the partners and their priorities. The deviation from optimum expectations causes mental health harm due to the nonfulfillment of one's desires. So to understand what to expect and what not to expect the couples should set some goals in their relationships which shall concern the following but should not be limited to:

Proper communication- Communication is the key to understanding your partner and their likes and dislikes. Often due to a lack of proper communication and conveying of messages, couples tend to misinterpret and grow apart. So it is advisable to share and listen to your partners’ daily activities and amusements and take hints on their preferences.

Prioritizing one another- It is insistent to prioritize your partner over work and friends. It is a must to make them feel required and valued if not special.

Trust is the key- It is obligatory to trust when together. Breach of trust causes an immense level of mental stress and an inability to trust anyone in the future.

Appreciating and creating unique moments- It is well said “The little things? The little moments? They aren’t little.” – Jon Kobat-Zin Life is a collection of little moments, happy or sad, planned or unplanned, that’s why creating memorable moments that enhance your bonding which might be as small as gifting a flower ring or praising them randomly.

Commitment to the relationship- Both partners should be at the same place in the relationship. They should know their level of commitment and at the same time manage that commitment made. Progression in the relationships should ideally be gradual and step-by-step.

Get rid of the past- Let the bygones be bygones and don’t have any effect on the present. But it is essential to gain the confidence of your partner by making them aware of your past.

Being clear about what you feel -Haste about expressing feelings without being sure what you feel messes relationships. Under peer pressure, people tend to misunderstand concern and care in friendship as love and tend to ruin existing relationships.

Mind the use of words -Everyone has a different mindset and their own way of thinking. So they are bound to collide. But the use of words like never and always exaggerates the conflicts.

Give proper space- Being a part of a relationship it is difficult to find personal space. It is the responsibility of the partner to ensure that the other significant person gets their privacy and the space is not exploited.

To summarize each and every person has unique existence and inclinations, when they agree to be in a relationship it is going to involve compromises and amazements just to take note of how to manage both these events takes their fused attempts. Failures might occur but nothing is lost when you have a constant supporting hand

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