As a result of the other recent IEI thread, I began thinking how I idealize particular relationships and place expectations upon them. zenbrat's statement about IEIs "remembering disappointments" really struck me as a core truth for me.
While I hesitate to impose upon anyone here for advice, I wondered whether any of the other IEIs might be able to share how they handle this specific aspect of their personality.
Some background details: I have connections with people that I really don't worry about. I enjoy seeing them, but don't sweat that I don't see them or stay in close touch with them. I also have closer relationships with others that have become trusted friends, based on our common goals, interests, and activities. I speak with them a couple times a week and might see them weekly as well. Then there are occasionally the more difficult connections that I would like to see move to a closer bond, but have trouble managing my expectations in this regard. I always seem to be left wanting more and being disappointed that things aren't progressing as I often yearn for them to be.
In most cases, my attention is riveted by the difficult One and I have to restrain myself from working harder to make an impact. I assume that in most cases, it's certainly easier to develop a relationship with someone who is alike yourself in many ways. On the same page in terms of how events and situations are handled, values the same experiences, sees things similarly. But often, I seek out and establish a connection with someone entirely different than me in many regards, as I feel compelled to challenge myself and my conventions. There is usually a strong attraction to something they may embody, something I believe fated to be, something about them I want to cultivate in myself...
At any rate, I'm at this place yet again. There's an IEE guy I am friends with (who I'm actually quite attracted to as well, but that's neither here nor there) with whom I always find challenges my ability to handle disappointment. His job (IT) can be often very unpredictable; his life is packed full. We recently made plans which seemed to be pretty stable, but at the 11th hour, he called to cancel. This has occurred a few times before, and as a result to his active social life and outdoor pursuits (like rockclimbing, etc), he's so extremely difficult to pin down. I'm disappointed when he cancels plans, because he doesn't attempt to reschedule even though he often attempts to reassure me of his good intent. I also get the distinct impression this kind of thing happens so often, he's gotten pretty familiar with how to placate the people he disappoints (telling them he'll make it up, etc. and showing concern and interest in their feelings). He's right there with the consolation prize ("I'll pay next time!!").
OK... so I don't want to fault or "black mark" him. I realize people may have jobs that may preempt their personal lives occasionally. But I can't seem to help being disappointed. The worst is that the next time we manage to set plans, I'm worrying even more all along they're just going to fall through again. I hate the last minute cancellation more than anything. Such an emotional letdown! One of the things I like to do is anticipate getting together, I look forward to it immensely. But with a history of having these things fall through, I just find myself dreading the potential frustration. I hate that I'm not easygoing about this kind of thing. He certainly doesn't worry that everything will eventually work out sometime in the future (he's also a 7, btw) but I'm always left feeling that I've been deprived of a chance to bond with him.
I know this must be related to leading a great deal as well. I hate "not knowing" whether things might or might not work out, I can't stand being in an ambiguous spot regarding plans and arrangements. He's very open with all of that stuff and prefers the last minute, down to the wire kind of thing. He's OK with whatever way the tree falls. I want to know so that I can get out of the way. (Metaphorically speaking!)
Seems I certainly need lessons in spontaneity and I've chosen myself a pretty apt mentor...
How does the IEI manage the tendency to expect and not take disappointments to heart? Any help appreciated.