When I was single, the reason I couldn’t find a good man was my habit of “wishful hoping.” I am long past that now, but as a coach I find “wishful hoping” is probably one of the key factors that make finding your true love take so long.
“Wishful hoping” is very similar to being in a state of longing. You may understand it better if I share with you this definition of longing by Gay Hendricks:
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“Longing is a persistent lingering feeling of wanting something you can’t quite get or something you’ve judged unattainable.”
To find a good man you must be honest about what it is you believe a good man to be. If you find yourself making excuses about a man’s bad behavior it’s time to re-evaluate your standards.
So what are some of the ways “wishful hoping” can show up around your relationships? Here are some examples:
- Waiting for a man to leave his wife or break-up with his girlfriend.
- Waiting for a man to drink less or stop doing drugs.
- Making excuses for a man when he doesn’tcall or email you as promised.
- Continually paying for everything when he’s promised to look for work.
- Waiting for a man to take care of himself or lose weight.
- Waiting for a man to finally be “ready” to commit to you.
There are exceptions to some of these situations of course, but you get the idea.
When you are longing for things to be different and waiting for some one to change you're at their mercy. The only person you can change is yourself and all the wishful hoping in the world won't change that.
I don’t care how much you complain to him about his drinking or his attachment to another woman, most likely he's not going to change. In fact studies have shown that if you keep complaining to someone about their behavior it just makes them dig in their heels and continue the unwanted behavior longer.
I bet you don’t like to be told what to do, and when you are, I bet your inner rebel gets triggered. Then without knowing why you find yourself stubbornly refusing to give the other person what they want.
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You can free yourself from “wishful hoping” by getting real with what's happening in the present. Take care of yourself based on what is going on now, not what you think may happen in the future.
If you do this, you’ll greatly shorten the time it will take you to find a good man; your Mr. Right. It may be hard to let go of what you have imagined for yourself, but trust me, facing the reality of what is feels better.