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How To Expect The Best - And Get It!
by Serge Kahili King

An expectation is usually described simply as a belief that something is going to happen, whether negative or positive.

Some people are afraid of negative expectations because they think that having such thoughts will cause bad things to happen. It would seem that such people believe that thoughts are tremendously powerful. However, the same people often believe that positive thoughts don't have much if any power at all.

Some people are afraid of positive expectations because they are afraid of being disappointed when the positive expectations don't work out. If you dig deep you will find that such people often believe that positive expectations actually cause bad things to happen.

Now, it's a fact that for many people positive expectations do not work out the way they want them to. And that makes them feel disappointed, which means feeling bad. And they become afraid of feeling bad. so they try not to have any positive expectations.

But expectations don't cause bad feelings, and things not working out the way you want them to doesn't cause bad feelings. Bad feelings like disappointment come from not liking the way things turned out and staying mad about it. And that's a choice.

However, this is not a talk about how to not feel disappointed. It is about how to use positive expectations effectively. A positive expectation is a desire for something good to happen. To make things simple I am going to talk about the 10% way, the 50% way, and the 100% way to do this.

The 10% way is to be very specific about what you want, use every means you can think of to maintain your focus on what you want, do whatever you can to keep your motivation high, and consider any deviation from your intention to be a failure. If you do this, about 10%--or maybe more--of what you want will probably come about. That's pretty good, actually, but a lot of people mess this up by shifting their attention to the failure instead of refining or re-defining their focus.

The 50% way is to do the same thing with focus and motivation, but to be not as specific about what you want. This can either mean being more general, like wanting a good car instead of wanting a specific model and style, or being more adaptable about what you want, like wanting a three bedroom house in Malibu and accepting one in San Diego, or being more adaptable about when you want it, like being willing to wait a year or so till what you want becomes available.

Another important part of this way is to not be afraid of not getting what you want. When this seems to be the case, you just change your plans. If you do all this about 50%--or maybe more--of what you want will probably come about.

The 100% way requires a shift in perspective. For instance, instead of focusing on what you want, you focus on the general expectation that good things are bound to happen, without defining what those good things have to be.

This doesn't stop you from thinking about and planning for specific good things, but your focus is on expecting good no matter what. And instead of building a high degree of motivational desire energy, you build a high degree of enjoyment energy.

"Enjoyment energy" needs some explaining, because most people have never heard of or considered it. Enjoyment energy comes from the degree of pleasure you experience from seeing, hearing, doing, feeling and imagining what you like. The level of excitement is a measure of the level of energy that feeds your expectation of more good. A decent metaphor would be that of turning yourself into a powerful magnet for good.

Along with the focus and energy aspects of this way, you must go beyond adaptability into recognizing the good, seeking the good, and even finding a way to create the good out of everything that happens. In this way, therefore, bad things never happen. Things may happen that you don't like, but when they do you use them as an opportunity to increase the good, in yourself or in the world.

If you do this, about 100%--maybe a little less--of what you want (good things) will probably come about. And if it doesn't, well, hey, even 75% would be great.

For your general interest, here are the words for "expect" in Hawaiian.
Mahu'i - to guess, assume, suspect, imagine (hu'i also means "a prayer")
Kuhi - to guess, assume, surmise, imagine (kuhi also means "to point toward something")
Mana'o - idea, belief, opinion, intention, desire, want (positive expectation)
Mana'olana - hope, confidence (positive expectation without worry)
Kakali - wait, tarry, loiter, linger, hesitate (negative expectation)
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