"Nobody succeeds beyond his or her wildest expectations unless he or she begins with some wild expectations. " - RALPH CHARELL
What are your expectations for your life? Are you excited about your future or are you facing it with apprehension and fear? For most people the future holds too many uncertainties and the fear of what might happens tends to overshadow the ray of light that represents the life they ultimately desire. One of the hardest things to do in life is to lift yourself out of your current circumstance and step up to the level of life you desire.
We all live with an unconscious expectation of ourselves and our own lives. This expectation not only determines what we have in our lives but it also represents what we are willing to settle for. Expectation is a very powerful emotion and one that very few people ever learn to fully cultivate. Whatever you expect with certainty is what you will get in your life. Expectation is the emotional state where an idea becomes so real that you feel it even though you can't hold it yet. Expectation is like an invisible magnet that will attract into your life that which you expect. When you expect something you activate and engage those parts of your mind and your nervous system that can empower you to think the unthinkable and do the undoable. One of the most powerful ways to cultivate expectation is to develop a very clear vision for your life.
Most people never even make the time to really define what they want from their lives, but even those who do follow the hope and pray strategy. They kind of know what they want but they don't believe they can have it, so they hope that something will happen and come along their life path to fulfil their desires. Expectation however, is a completely different mindset. It is a mindset of absolute certainty that can be consciously cultivated. Inherent in hoping there is a sense of doubt as you always hold two opposing results in your minds eye. When you expect something you know it is definitely happening. The very focus of your mind dwells upon one definite end result. To turn a hope into an expectation, you simply eliminate doubt and fear by eliminating the opposing outcome. Instead of “seeing" something fail or succeed, you now only see the success. With expectation your actions, your words and your imagination dwells upon and reflects you already having and being exactly what you want. When you expect something you remove the doubt that is inherent in hoping.
When a mother to be is pregnant we would say that she is expecting. In other words she knows beyond a shadow of a doubt exactly what's going to happen. Although some of the details are still unclear she is certain about the fact that she will have a baby and not something unknown. On an emotional level she can feel the result because she is expecting it although she can't see and touch it yet. What you expect for your life is exactly like that. When you start to expect for your life that which you absolutely desire your whole mindset turns from an uncertain hoping and wishing to the certainty of expecting. The images you encourage and entertain in your minds eye, what you say to yourself and everybody else reflects only the results you are committed to.
Most people expect the worst and hope for the best. Our cultural conditioning has thought us things like “don't get your hopes up" – just in case you might be disappointed. We've been taught to aim as low as possible. Everything above that will be a bonus. Right? Wrong! Remember that what you expect with certainty is what you will get in your life. You have to break away from the autopilot of the masses that just settle for an ordinary life; a life where they are not really happy but they are not unhappy to do something about it. If you want to lift your life and the quality of your life to a higher level than what it is at the moment you need to start by raising your expectations. Raise your expectations of what you are as a person and what you believe you deserve. See, what you believe you deserve is based on your expectations. When you lift your expectations to a higher level you raise your own standards and raising your standards is the first step to improving your life.
When you expect only the very best you will get only the very best. What you earn right now is what you expect to earn. The amount of free time you have right now is what you expect to have as free time. The relationships you have are what you expect it to be. When you expect the best it's not like expecting something good or something similar, but it is the best and only the best. You have to stop settling for less than you can be or have. On a deep psychological level this is exactly what creates your expectations and that is why a lifetime of settling for less than you can be creates an expectation that is only “o. k". It becomes the standard that you are willing to settle for. Think of yourself as the pregnant mother who expects (not hopes) only the best and with her imagination she is able to “live" the result in magnificent detail until she eventually has the experience of physically holding her “expectation". You have to nurture and care for your desires and only by becoming unreasonable in your expectations can you turn your deepest desires into reality. Expectations are ideas that are build on solid rock. They are unshakeable; unlike hopes and wishes that will wash away with the first storm that comes along.
You need no special skills or knowledge to raise your expectations. You simply need a decision that from this point onwards you will never again settle for anything less than you can possible be. The difference between hoping for something with uncertainty and depending on something with expectation is nothing but the way you control and direct the focus of your mind. What you say to yourself, the images you imagine and your behaviour are what you can consciously control and direct. But, only if you choose to. If not, you will revert back to the autopilot of the masses just go with the flow of “whatever" comes along. The cultural autopilot is the emotional default and only through conscious and consistent nurturing of your desires and emotions can you live life by your own standards and create the expectations that will lead you to a life abundance and fulfilment.
Great expectations create great results. When you expect the best it will become a directional mechanism that will guide you to seeking out and finding what you expect. The difference between great expectations and weak hopes is nothing but a mindset; a mindset that can make the difference between living a life of fulfilment and one of desperation and frustration. Create the expectation by making sincere decisions. Nurture your expectations by never settling for anything less than the best.
This article is published with the permission of the author, Deon Du Plessis. He is the founder of The Self Improvement Gym, and author (in)action, a groundbreaking new action guide on eliminating procrastination. For more of his in-depth insights into personal development and access to his free self improvement library visit http://www.The Self Improvement – Gym.com