From my files. I am not sure where I got this or who to attribute it to, but I think it is really good.
As a being of thought, your dominant mental attitude will determine your condition in life…Thought is causal and creative, and appears in your character and life in the form of results. (Above Life’s Turmoil)
In his great book, The Miracle of Right Thought, Orison Swett Marden has a great chapter entitled “Working For One Thing and Expecting Something Else.” It very neatly explains why many of us get the results we do despite our desire for better.
“To be always doubting your ability to get what you long for, is like trying to reach East by traveling West. There is no philosophy which will help a person to succeed when he is always doubting his ability to do so, and thus attracting failure.”
When you are faced with a difficult circumstance do you expect the worst or expect the best? Both Allen and Marden tell us that whatever we expect we attract. If it’s your habit to always expect the worst you’re simply adding fuel to the fire, creating more negative circumstances that will create more negative expectations on your part.
And it is a habit. At some point in your life (and it may have been many years ago) you began to expect the worst. Eventually it became a habit. Want to change your results? Change your habit of expectation. Learn to expect the best.
Negative expectations are really nothing more than a manifestation of fear, so look the fear in the face. What is the worst that could happen? Is there some action you can take that will change it? If so, take the action — nothing conquers fear faster than action. If no action on your part will change it, then have the Faith that you will handle the outcome. That thought alone is a positive expectation. Take to heart the ages old wisdom that “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”
In the final analysis, always expecting the worst is living a life in fear. Always expecting the best is living a life in Faith. As the ancient writer Paul noted, “Faith is the substance of things hoped for.” And Marden described the power of Faith in The Miracle of Right Thought: “Faith is the bed rock upon which all other foundation stones in every great character rest. Thus the person who has an invincible faith in his mission, an unconquerable faith in himself has power in the world.