The Power of Expectations

Here are the simple facts (common sense but not common practice):

  • if you expect the day to be a drag, it will be.
  • if you expect people to cheat and take advantage of you, you will attract people who are out only for themselves.
  • if you expect people to disagree with you and try to make you wrong, you will approach with defensiveness and possibly aggressiveness and they will automatically react as if attacked.


  • if you wake up looking for a good day, you will see the details that make this view true.
  • if you expect people will treat you as you treat them, with kindness, they will return your behavior in kind.
  • if you expect people to give their best, they will return the compliment with the best they can do with what they have in the moment, often better.

Of course, you will find exceptions to these rules. However, since it is our brains that we see with and not our eyes, you cannot help but create the reality you see.

How often have you changed your expectations and judgments of a person or situation in an instant when you received new information? Can you choose to do so, to expect the best or see alternate possibilities, on your own?

I don’t mean you have to act on blind faith; it is important to take care of yourself. Yet what happened to the rule, “Innocent until proven guilty”? If you want to feel good, you need to see good in your life.

The brain has the primary job of protecting you. It is wired to look for the bad and expect the worse. Therefore, you need to set an intention to be disciplined about changing your mind. Every morning, ask yourself what you are expecting about your day. Consider what evils you take for granted, such as the traffic going to work, the time wasted in the meeting you have to attend, the conversation you need to have with a co-worker or contractor. Can you imagine a best case scenario? Is there anything you can do to help make this come true?

Yes, you may have to settle for second best at times, maybe even a disappointing surprise. Yet, your expectations are one of the most powerful factors in creating the outcomes you experience. It’s up to you to influence the results by shifting your expectations.
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