I had a different topic in mind when I sat down to write this blog, but lately I’ve been hit over the head so many times about another concept that I can’t help but write about that instead. When I see a trend happening over and over again, I know I’m supposed to write about it.
One of the first things I learned when I became a coach was a very simple concept, and many of you have likely heard it before: You get whatever you’re looking for.
In other words …
YOUR EXPECTATIONS BECOME YOUR REALITY
Ever since I first heard this universal truth, I intellectually understood it. It’s easy for my brain to follow that, if I’m in the market for a new car, then all of a sudden I’ll notice car dealerships and new cars everywhere I go.
What you focus on will naturally become prominent in your life. That just makes sense.
But over the past few years, I’ve gone from intellectually understanding this concept to knowing it with every cell in my body. It’s become abundantly clear to me that this is true in every single area of your life, down to your deepest beliefs about yourself, what’s possible for you, and the world in general.
Lately, I’ve seen proof of this not only in my own life, but for everyone around me, too.
PROOF THAT YOUR THOUGHTS CREATE YOUR REALITY
Just last week, I was talking with a client (we’ll call her Catherine) who’s looking for a new job. She told me she wants a job where she doesn’t have to interact with people very much. In fact, if she could work from home and only communicate with people via email, she’d prefer that.
When I asked why she wanted that, she confided that, even though she’s a naturally optimistic, caring person who tries to be mostly positive and who really values her close friends and family … she’s been feeling increasingly disillusioned with humanity.
The people at her office are negative, argumentative, and uncooperative. When she watches the news, all she sees are people being cruel or violent to each other. Wherever she goes, she notices people being rude or disrespectful to one another. Naturally, she can’t help but feel disheartened.
Based on this worldview, it makes complete sense that Catherine would want to spend her working hours alone!
The more we talked, though, the more I intuitively felt that, if Catherine were working with the right kind of people (friendly, creative, positive, team-players), she would thrive in a more social working environment. And as I painted that picture for her, she couldn’t help but feel tentatively excited.
“You mean, there are jobs like that? There are companies where people are positive and collaborative and friendly? It’s hard for me to imagine.”
I assured her that I’ve worked with several clients who were working in exactly that kind of environment. It definitely does exist.
All of a sudden, she started questioning her desire to find a job that was completely disconnected from other people.
YOU GET WHAT YOU LOOK FOR
Whether she consciously realized it or not, Catherine had adopted a belief that people will mostly disappoint you.
And once you establish a belief, you’ll find all kinds of evidence to support it. That’s simply how we’re wired as humans — we’ll always find a way to prove our beliefs right (even if we don’t want to be right about some of them).
The great news is that you have way more control over your beliefs than you think you do. It’s just as easy to believe that people are generally good as it is to believe that they’re mostly bad.
Whatever you choose to believe, you’ll prove yourself right … so choose your beliefs carefully.
I asked Catherine to spend this week specifically looking for and making a list of all of the positive interactions she witnesses. Anytime someone is nice, helpful, supportive, or compassionate with another person, she’ll note it in an ongoing list.
I guarantee you her view of humanity will start to become more positive before the end of the week.
WHAT’S POSSIBLE WHEN YOU SHIFT YOUR EXPECTATIONS
One of Rachel’s clients (let’s call her Stephanie) sent an email recently with a perfect story of how you get exactly what you’re looking for:
“I went to a talk on Tuesday, and the speaker talked about starting his company, and then 10 years into it, he was so burnt out he changed his life and company to a minimalist approach and ended up living and working in an airstream trailer while traveling the country. It was so inspiring, and everything he said about living simple, eating healthy, adventure, working hard but working less … I was just thinking to myself, ‘Yes, yes!’
So then a very interesting part was during the Q&A session. A woman asked a question about finding work as a logo designer. She’s been a freelancer for a while now, and she was talking about how hard it is to find people willing to pay because of the growing DIY and over-saturated market. She actually started getting upset with him when he wasn’t able to give her a list of step-by-step instructions to get clients. She just kept going back to the economy and not enough work for everyone. I realized if I’d gone to this talk a year ago, before I got coached, I would’ve been having similar thoughts. I would’ve been thinking, ‘That’s great for him, but there’s no way I could have a life like that.’ But instead I left thinking of ways I can … whoa … :)”
Stephanie went to this talk expecting to feel inspired and learn how to create the lifestyle she really wants … and that’s what she got. But the other woman, who listened to the exact same presentation, got what she expected to see: all the ways this wouldn’t work for her.
WHAT DO YOU EXPECT TO SEE?
Do you expect finding a new job to be hard and time-consuming? Do you expect people to be rude to you? Do you expect to barely make ends meet at the end of each month? Do you expect your day-to-day life to feel arduous and challenging?
Then that will be your reality.
But what if you expected to easily and naturally attract the perfect new job? What if you expected to run into friendly people everywhere you went? What if you expected to make way more money than you spend each month? What if you expected to see opportunities in place of challenges?
Then that would become your new reality.
If you don’t like your current reality, it’s time to change your expectations.
So now I want to hear from you: What beliefs or expectations are you willing to change in order to create your new reality? Leave a comment to let me know!
Kristen (+ Rachel)
P.S. YOU DON’T HAVE TO FIGURE THIS OUT ALONE
Want help identifying and changing your beliefs so you can create your new reality? We help people do exactly that in Step 1 of our Passion Plan Virtual Experience program, which we’ll be re-opening for enrollment next month.
If you want to be on the VIP list (you’ll be the first to know when the Virtual Experience re-opens, PLUS you’ll get an exclusive discount), make sure you join here.
Thank you! So true, and so obvious, and so forgotten by many (or should I say ‘remembered by many’ ? *grins* You ladies are doing a great job!
Thanks, Willow! 🙂
I know this to be true but it is great to be reminded and read some ‘case studies’. I will be writing out my negative expectations and then changing them to positive ones 🙂