Daily prompt: Take your pick


What you expect is what you get, so they say.

But then they also say Expect the unexpected.

 I’ve never been sure whether these things are said by two different sets of They, or whether you’re supposed to reconcile the two and come up with a one-size-fits-all philosophy of expectation suitable for all occasions.

Then there’s You’ll see it when you believe it, which is pretty much the same as getting what you expect and rocketed Wayne Dyer to fame and fortune, no doubt thus proving the absolute validity of the hypothesis.

I’ve tried, I really have. I read Mr Dyer’s book with huge enthusiasm, hanging on his every word. And it helped. At a time when things looked fairly bleak all round and the holes into which I could fall pitted the landscape like a subterranean obstacle course, I hung on like grim death to the belief that I could manifest a positive outcome by sheer bloody-minded determination.

And hard work. In Mr Dyer’s version, belief had to backed up by hard work, which is possibly why I was more open to it. Nothing will convince me that a red Porsche with your name on it will fall from the sky while you sit on a tropical island eating mangoes. Unless you’re North West, perhaps.

But on the other hand, I have worked hard at things that didn’t achieve what I wanted. Was this because deep down, I didn’t really expect they would? Or did I not work hard enough? Or was it a silly idea in the first place?

And here’s a conundrum. I am about to trundle out to Laggers Point in the expectation of seeing a few whales go by. What if they don’t? Have I not expected fervently enough? Have the whales’ expectations of being further south by now trumped my expectation of seeing them here today?

Or is this the whole thing a load of hooey thought up by someone with too much time on their hands and a nasty sense of humour?


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11 Responses to Daily prompt: Take your pick

  1. I believe in work. And I believe in success. I also believe in failure. Sometimes, we don’t get the red Porsche. Sometimes, we lose that job. It happens. What you do about it says more about you than how you act when you win.

  2. Monicle says:

    I get very pissed off at people who, when everything is great in their life, say that they made their life that way and if your life isn’t good it’s your own fault for not ‘thinking right’. I go with ‘load of hooey’.

  3. I definitely go with “load of hooey.” Sometimes (often?) the thing you’re trying to “manifest” is so much less than fate has in store for you. 🙂

  4. You know, I think if we go back and look at what most of us have accomplished by dint of hard work and perseverance we’d be amazed. Okay, so maybe there’s no a red Porsche at the end of the rainbow. So what? All that matters is that we feel good about who we are and what we did that was good, and try not to beat ourselves up over apparent failures. It’s not always “in the cards.” And sometimes we “lose ourselves in vain pursuits,” as I heard a priest say once long ago. But even then, get back on the road and find your way back to yourself. Then, “find a path that has heart and give it all you’ve got” and wonderful things will indeed happen. (Don Juan). Another quote from years ago, another wise man talking to a group of young men gathered around a table at an outdoor Cafe in downtown Toronto one fine summer night: “I tell you something, boys. You can change history.” Never underestimate your creative power. Believe in it.

    • I think we all change history just by being here and interacting with other people, even sometimes unknowingly. And I think sometimes we don’t get what we aim for because we come in with lessons to learn, and we’re not ready yet/suitable for the outcome we wanted. The perspective of age is a wonderful thing!

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