Your expectation is a mental picture of your desired future. Though an intangible asset, it plays a key role in how your life turns out because you can only get to a destination you know. The power of expectation lies in the fact that it affects the quality of your current performance. There’s a saying that ‘to change the quality of a man’s performance, all you need to do is to change the picture he’s seeing’.
The draughtsman of your expectation is your mind. The more developed your mind is, the more vivid the picture of the future it paints. When you have a clear picture of the future, you come across as a confident person and that goes a long way in attracting the people that will help you get to your destination. The tragedy of our time is that most people place little or no emphasis on the development of their mind. Some don’t even have mind development as part of their goals.
The importance of money, on the other hand, cannot be overemphasized. Without money, life will be thoroughly stressful because it will be virtually impossible to engage the services of others. When you’re unable to get other people to do things for you, the only option you’re left with is to do things yourself. This is bound to significantly reduce your effectiveness.
Difference between expectation and money
Your money is tangible while your expectation is intangible. Your money determines what you can have whereas your expectation determines who you become. The much quoted scriptural passage, “As a man thinks, so is he”, is a truism. In effect, you are formed by your expectation while your money is a product of who you are.
At an esoteric level, the major difference between money and expectation is that whereas money can fail and usually fails (especially in hyperinflation economic environment), expectation hardly fails. People almost always realize whatever expectation they have of themselves.
Since I already dwelt on money in the article I titled: “What You Need to Know about Money”, I will now take time to talk about expectation.
Types of expectation
Expectation theorists identified two kinds of expectation: adaptive and rational. Adaptive expectation posits that the occurrence of future events derives from past events. Such relationship could be positive, negative, direct or inverse. A typical example of adaptive expectation is the forecasting of future events on the basis of trend analysis. This is a major tool policy makers use in formulating policies.
Rational expectation theorists, on the other hand, posit that future events have no relationship whatsoever with the past events. As such, there’s no way of predicting or forecasting future events by evaluating historical events. The proponents of rational expectation hold the view that future events are stimulated by occurrences we have no way of determining. To this end, it’s impossible to have a graphical representation of events that are subject to rational expectation.
While a big share of policy formulation is based on adaptive expectation, forward-looking nations and organization make room for rational expectation by encouraging creativity. As a matter of fact, in such climes, policies are put in place to allow people come up with innovative ways of doing things.
My Christian faith has overridden the adaptive expectation way of thinking I was used to by virtue of my training. To this end, I am a die-hard rational expectation believer. I hold the view that no eye has seen, no ear has heard and no mind has ever conceived the great things that are ahead of me. I am always expectant about what tomorrow holds. I find solace in the scripture that says, “Do not remember the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing…” (Isaiah 43:18-19). That this statement was made by the Creator makes this verse of scripture the anchor for my orientation towards rational expectation.
The power of expectation
In elementary Economics, it’s said that demand for a product is determined by the money price of that product such that the higher the money price, the lower the demand for the product. However, in higher learning, and, more appropriately, in real life, demand is largely determined by expectation.
For instance, if a rich man in the class of Warren Buffet promises you US$1,000,000 (one million US Dollar) in a year’s time, when do you think you will start spending the money? If your answer is ‘when you receive the money’, you’re wrong. I bet that you will start spending the money immediately. Depending on your needs, you would likely have spent all the money before you receive it. Even if you are a conservative person who wouldn’t spend the money s/he doesn’t have, the marketers / sellers of consumer goods, real estates, and other valuable items would give you irresistible credit offers on the strength of the promise you have been given.
The power of expectation not only works at the psychological level but also at the physiological level. I always depict this analogy with the impact hunger has on me. When I am hungry and my thought goes, “What I am going to eat when I get home?” If my answer is, “There’s really nothing to eat.” I usually feel hungrier so much so that I begin to sweat. However, if my answer is, “I’ll eat so and so.” Usually the hunger subsides and I am always able to concentrate on what I am doing until I get home. That is the power of expectation!
Effects of expectation
In layman’s language, expectation can be positive or negative. The fact is that whatever your expectation is, it usually becomes your reality. A lot has been written on positive thinking that I will not bother expatiating on the subject. However, it is worthwhile to mention that it takes the same effort to think positive or negative thoughts, and if that is the case, it makes no sense to entertain negative thought or expectation. The Christians call positive expectation, hope. Hope happens to be one of the tripod stands of Christian faith (the other two are faith and love).
The biggest problem in the world today is that most people have no hope (positive expectation). Most people for reason of poor or zero mind development coupled with visionless leadership cannot see a better future. Because of these twin problems, their expectation of the future is nightmarish, at best. The implication of these problems is the prevalence of criminal activities being perpetrated by hopeless citizens.
When people discount their future expectations and they get a present value of expectations that is zero or close to zero, they see crimes as a viable option. As they say, he that is down fears no fall.
Conversely, someone who has developed his mind (through education) and has committed to a lifetime of personal development has a different reality. I don’t have US$1,000,000 in my bank account. However, I’ll not engage in a crime even if I am offered US$10,000,000. Why? Because engaging in criminal activities will only detract from the great future I hold for myself.
The foregoing analysis offers a lot of insight into ways of addressing the insecurity prevalent around the globe. Governments, organizations and individuals must focus on educating people’s minds. In short, education, not only schooling, should be a top priority for everyone. Of course the second issue is transparency and accountability in governance. These twin issues will create an environment for right thinking. When people have a positive expectation of the future, the likelihood of them getting into crimes will greatly reduce.
Finally, expectation, and by extension mind development, takes precedence over money because the Scripture admonishes God’s children to guard their hearts / minds (not money) with all diligence because the issues of life flows therefrom (Proverbs 4:23 paraphrased).
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