Expecting the worst? 3 tips for quitting this bad habit!

By January 1, 2016Happiness, mindset

We hear all the time that people expect the worst so they can be prepared. They say, “I don’t want to be caught off guard.” Or, “if something good happens, I’ll be pleasantly surprised.”

This is a terrible habit! Expectation is a powerful tool and you can use it to make your life better.

Have you ever known someone who was terrified of getting cancer, focused on it constantly…then eventually got diagnosed? Or someone who thought all the time about his wife cheating when there were no signs of it…and then later she did?

We can chalk these situations up to coincidence, or their intuition, but I believe that our expectations can contribute to what happens to us.

The good news is that you can use the power of expectation to direct your life in positive ways. How?

Simplify. It’s hard to have anything that you want in life when you are too busy and always on the go. Find time every day to relax and quiet your mind. Have a bubble bath, relax on the couch with a meditation App and your headphones (I love the App “Calm”) or go for a walk and listen to instrumental music.

Another great way to simplify is to declutter. I am such a fan of clean, beautiful environments, as they can contribute to inner calm. Everyone who knows me well knows that I’m obsessed with purging things from my house. If I’m not using something, it’s gone! When there is too much stuff around us, it can stifle our personal growth and cause us to feel stuck. It stops us from being able to experience what we want in our lives.

Release the how…focus on the desired outcome. Sometimes it’s difficult to expect the best, because we think, “well how the heck is THAT going to happen?!” Let’s use an example. You want to get a raise, but right now with the economy in poor shape you think it’s an unrealistic goal. So you start to prepare yourself for no raise and maybe even losing your job entirely, just to be ready. I just have to throw in that this is a BAD IDEA!

Using the raise example, don’t focus on how your boss might find the money in the budget, or how Joe or Sarah or Steve might deserve it more. Just focus on the raise happening. Use statements like, “sometimes life plays out in incredible ways” or “things are always working out for me” to support your expectation.

Visualize. Visualization is one of my most favorite tools for increasing positive expectation! Many of the most successful people in the world visualize themselves accomplishing their goals. Arnold Schwarzenegger. Oprah Winfrey. Will Smith. These people overcame incredible odds to be so successful. I mean, after Terminator and Kindergarten Cop, who thought that Arnold would be governor of California?!

Using our previous example, visualize exactly what you’d be doing when you were told about the raise, where you would be, what your boss would say. What would you tell your loved ones afterwards? How would you feel on the drive home?

What would you we able to DO if you had this extra money? Would you save up for a new house, a trip, another big purchase? Would you buy more of something that you love?

What you want to focus on the most is about how it would FEEL to get the raise. Imagine that you have it. Would you feel more at peace? Calm? Confident? This helps you become aligned with your desire and increases the positive expectation.

Use these strategies for 30 days and you’ll be shocked by the changes in your life! What steps will you take today toward changing your expectations?

I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

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