Expectation Theory: Be Careful What You Don’t Hope For Because You Might Get It!

“Well, what did you expect?!”

Many folks are caught off guard by the above query on account of they were not expecting ANYTHING.

Here they were, just navigating their personal stream of consciousness and then Bam! Their apple cart is tipped over for no apparent reason.

And what is puzzling the person whom asks this often smug rhetorical question is: “Hey, this seems pretty obvious and you didn’t consider it?!”

Look Behind or Look Ahead but LOOK

An interesting twist on many people’s consciousness is their inability to realize that if hindsight can be 20/20, that very same skill of recognizing causation allows us to project potential into our future.

Anyone can say – “Oh man, I can’t believe you didn’t see that coming!” or “Sheeoot brother, everyone knows that dude is a turd.”

Fewer folks though, are so bold at seriously predicting their destiny and that’s a crying shame because if we don’t engage our capacity for expecting a better future, there is slight chance one will unfold by accident.

“Expecting the world to treat you fairly because you are a good person is a little like expecting a bull not to attack you because you are a vegetarian” –  Dennis Wholey

Who is Expecting What When?

One of the ways you are familiar with the seemingly disconnected force of expectation is through representations like the numbers on a clock.

In your mind you are aware that somewhere at this moment in time there are people assuming you will show at a 2:00 pm meeting and you are already ten minutes late. Are your expectations of their expectations having any impact on you? It’s all just thinking, you know… 😎

This sense of urgency manifests itself physically as shortness of breath, a ball in your gut and through millions of tiny beads of sweat which are now breaking out all over your soon-to-be-stinky body.

Pretty powerful stuff, huh?

And all that is required to engage this incredible force for positive effect in our own lives is that we contemplate our reality’s potential by actively expecting things to get better.

Because whether we expect things or not, they are going to happen.

Thank you, friend.

Barry out.

4 Responses to “Expectation Theory: Be Careful What You Don’t Hope For Because You Might Get It!”

  1. Expectations are only figments of our imagination Barry. If we are going to have any, I agree with you, they might as well be positive. However expectations don’t fit easily into ‘living in the moment’ – one of the secrets of happiness.

    It’s easy having theories, a bit harder to live them out. 🙄 I must admit my last memories of stress is rushing in a car to a meeting for which I was late. I was starting to get the symptoms you describe.

    Then I consciously tried to de-stress by telling myself, that no matter how much I worry, I can’t change the time I arrive. It worked. I continued to drive in a calmer, relaxed state. I was late, the world didn’t end. 😉

    John McNally recently posted..FREE eBay Tools CHECKLIST


  2. i learned early on from my father a good lesson about expectations. My father was always anticipating some bad outcome. Usually this meant that we needed to be 30 minutes early for everything. Of course what happenes when you are 30 minutes early is that all kinds of things happen that weren’t in the program. My takeaway is that being early sucks but more important I now anticipate all the bad things that can possible happen before I start. Nothing I ever think of actually happens but you can count on one thing. I never arrive anyplace early.
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    Barry Williams Reply:

    Excellent story Ralph.

    The clock has stolen more lives than all wars put together and unless somebody stops this madness with measuring the flow of existence, only dudes like you and me will break free from the sand dunes of this wacky substance and the weird cult is has given rise to.

    People think that booze is a problem? Hah! Booze, war and all violent crime put together hasn’t come close to the number of lives ruined by the clock. Jobs lost for being late or slow, homes lost for being late or slow, horrific automobile crashes for being late or slow – the list goes on and on.

    Thankfully, you learned from your dad’s example and do not let the clock rule your life like it does for so many others.

    You are a wise man, Ralph and I greatly appreciate your input. Thanks pal.



  3. I’m so fucking smart. Why ain’t I rich?!


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