Expectations... Setup for Failure or Stepping Stones to Success?

We've all either heard or read the following:

Expect nothing and you'll never be disappointed.

This quote is a defeatist quote. It is only uttered when one is disappointed because someone let them down or because there has been a setback somewhere in life. Defeatist, by definition, means someone who is resigned to defeat without offering positive suggestions. A person who has given up, period. The truth is disappointment comes whether you expect it or not. Our attitudes are what determines future outcomes.

So if you used to say that quote pictured above... STOP IT! Begin to expect again. The problem that lies in disappointments we have semi control over is that we give power to others, elevating them to statuses unsustainable by their own means. We make them gods in our lives not realizing man is not Sovereign like God Almighty and they will fail, therefore we will be disappointed.

Steps to Healthy Expectations

1. Recognize your own strengths and talents

God gave us all unique gifts and abilities. What are yours? Don't waste time looking around at others, spend that time improving the skills you've got! Are they marketable? A quick glance at YouTube will remind you that, whether its being discovered by recording artists or having millions of hits and forming a #Team(insert wacky name here), someone will be interested in your talents. Go for it!

2. Understand what EXPECTATION is

The definition of expectation is the belief (mentally) about the future OR the one I really love- the act of anticipating with confidence of fulfillment. Tell me the second definition didn't just blow your mind... Just me? Well, that's okay. I am confident that you will begin to expect greatness of yourself. See what I did there? Ha, no but seriously, understand the definition and principal of expectation and put it into action. Take a look at any business or successful person, they've ALL had and still have expectations of success. Disappointments come, see what worked and what didn't. Can you tweak the failure of one thing to make it the success of another? Check out this article from Success Magazine: http://www.success.com/articles/1181-why-failure-is-good-for-success

3. Move in silence

My mother always said "Everybody doesn't need to know your business." True words spoken. This is not to say you should behave as a secret agent with confidential information, actually it is quite close. Alright, here's what I mean. Everyone does not have your best interest at heart, hence human failure, so to avoid this do some pruning. First, discover who is your active support system- tell them your overall goal and how they can support you. Second, Recognize who runs competition with you, this person will try to best you. They will not share information on public relations, a great web developer, they might even take your ideas and run them as their own- AVOID THEM (business-wise). Next, network, network, network! Get on the web, find out where the movers and shakers of your interest are holding events, conferences, meet-ups, etc. Get in the mix! Finally, do not publicize unestablished information about what you want or is happening. Publishing "completion" is what's important. Take note on how other (yes other, visualizing positive outcomes start now!) successful people make business headlines. The buzz is created amongst like-interested networking circles until everything is revealed to the world. Move in silence... shhh.

4. Write down your expectations and create a road map

This is self-explanatory. Go down to the craft or local hardware store and purchase a dry-erase board. I am not telling you to create a vision board, you may do that as well if you like. However, I suggest first getting and using a dry-erase board. Why? Because it is proactive. Make sure you write down your expectations and then begin working on your road map. Your road map is what will go onto the dry-erase board- a checklist of sorts. The 'vision' board you created will now be known as your Expectation Board. Go get 'em!