What Do You Expect?

We get what we expect. You may or may not believe that, but most of us will readily agree that if we don’t expect a particular outcome from our efforts then we won’t get that outcome – or if we do we will attribute it to random chance or to circumstances beyond our control. Nobody who ever started a business expected it to fail, but I’d be willing to bet that more than half of the people who start a new business aren’t sure that it will succeed and so they go into their new venture with a certain ambivalence regarding the success or failure of their business. In my own life I am coming to see the truth that we do get what we expect, and so if we begin a new venture of any kind with anything but an expectation of success we will get precisely what we expect – anything but success!

I don’t mean to suggest for even a moment that expecting success is enough. If you open a restaurant but know nothing about the restaurant business and don’t surround yourself with people who are experienced in restaurant management, no expectation of success will overcome your own ineptness. If you don’t do the work required to reach your expected success, your expectation will not overcome your laziness. I would say, however, that if you don’t put the required work into your business you don’t really expect to succeed, no matter what polished and positive language flows from your lips.

The same is true for our relationships. If you don’t expect your relationship to succeed, I can almost guarantee that it won’t – and if your partner doesn’t expect your relationship to succeed then your relationship is doomed. You can attribute what I am saying to a kind of power of positive thinking, which is part of it, but it’s better to say that if we believe something is going to succeed then you will take actions that lead to success! If you think your relationship is doomed to be a six month disaster, why would you put any effort into its long term success?

You see, we do get what we expect, provided that we also follow up by putting the work into that success and avail ourselves of the help and resources that come into our awareness. Too many of us sell ourselves short, and the result is that we have failure after failure to look back on in our past. The technique is to forget about the past. It’s gone and you can’t change it anyway. Look in this moment to the reality that right now is the beginning of your success. You’ll be amazed at what a difference it makes, but try not to be too amazed. You’d be better off to expect the difference!

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