“I learned that caring too much for those I loved was more blinding than revealing. By letting go of this control-oriented, judgmental, and outcome-oriented kind of caring (I) could feel the freedom to love (my brother) easily without feeling obligated to be a particular way toward him. Love without a scorecard.”
-Michael Carroll, a meditation teacher and coach
Caring Too Much
What does it mean to ‘care too much’? Carroll gives us some clues – it’s the sort of caring where you see a specific outcome for another person, and you do your best to direct them towards that outcome. People do this all the time in their relationships. We expect our partners should change…and in very specific ways.
This is often done with the best of intentions. You genuinely believe that your partner will be better off if they do things in a ‘better’ way (hence the judgmental part of Carroll’s comment.)
But you are not alike, and your ‘better’ way might not be better for your partner or, perhaps, for your relationship (for example, if your partner feels belittled by your approach or requests.)
One path is to let go of trying to direct your partner in a specific direction. That frees you to make requests of your partner because they are important to you, while acknowledging your partner’s agency.
Are you caring too much?
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