"Whatever we expect with confidence becomes our own self-fulfilling prophecy."
Is your glass half-empty or half full? You know. Or, at least you think you do. You have been asked this question your entire life. Hopefully, you enthusiastically answered, "Half-full!" Science shows us how our outlook on life shapes our reality. The placebo effect is another example of how our thoughts and expectations produce intended outcomes. This is one of those amazing discoveries I feel does not get enough "Wow!" press. Our mind, not some sugar pill, helped to cure whatever was ailing us! Wow!
Our expectations can also work against us when we fail to accomplish something because we convince ourselves that it was never going to happen in the first place. We give up on career goals or personal pursuits because our initial expectations turn sour due to obstacles or setbacks. Instead of sticking with our positive expectations, we may alter them to fit our unintended reality. How can we expect our plans and desires to ever come to fruition if we abandon them in response to our circumstances? If instead we choose to hold strong and commit to our positive expectations, we may end up surprising ourselves with a life that unfolds for us even better than we intended.
I have altered my expectations in life after learning this powerful lesson. I started being more positive and firm with my plans for my future. My main mantra is always, 'Excited anticipation, accept whatever unfolds.' I focus on expecting the best. I don't allow setbacks to affect me as much anymore because I expect they are paving the way for something bigger and better to come along. I am seeing the benefits of my positive expectations show up more in my professional and personal life. I am attracting more opportunities that align with my goal of spreading more wellness and living in greater abundance, from a quality of life perspective.
I also learned how some of my old negative expectations stemmed from worry and doubt. Once I started managing my anxiety I was able to let go of the stinkin' thinkin' in favor of positive expectations, and working toward those intended outcomes. I was also able to let the chips fall where they may and respond accordingly. Proceed or pivot. If we can learn to release our negative expectations for more favorable ones, we can allow for the right opportunities to show up more often. This way we can experience more of what we want out of life because we held firm on our positive expectations.
Positive Psychology: Self-Fulfilling Prophecy in Psychology: 10 Examples and Definition (+PDF)