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Aug 08, 2018

Expectations change the structure of our brains!

Written by Dr. Caroline Leaf

We have all heard the saying “be careful what you wish for”. Even though it usually has a negative connotation, that is sometimes you don’t really want to get what you wish for, it also shows how, on some level, we all recognize that our expectations can be powerful—for good or for bad.


In fact, our expectations change the structure of our brains! When we learn to expect good things, good things start to happen, such as better mental and physical performance. Yet the opposite is also true; thinking bad things are going to happen often allows bad things to happen! Fear is real and can build negative learned associations in the brain, which can affect our future thoughts, words, and actions, as I discuss in detail in my new book, Think, Learn and Succeed


So it really is so important to “be careful what we wish for”! Expectations can affect the outcome of any given situation, whether at school, work or in life. If we want to live successful, meaningful lives, we need to harness the power of our expectations to move us in a positive direction.


What are some ways you can use your expectations to achieve success in life?


  • Throughout the day, ask yourself if you expect things to go well? Why? Or do you expect things to go badly? Why?
  • Analyze your particular expectations. How have your expectations about a particular event or circumstance affected you?
  • Deliberately and intentionally practice having positive expectations in every situation and write them down. The more you do this, the more you will find yourself applying these in your life.


For more information on the power of expectancy, and other mindsets to help you achieve your goals in life, order my new book Think, Learn and Succeed!

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