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You Usually Get What You Expect

by | Jan 15, 2019 | Experiences, Peter's Voice

The other night Beth and I were sitting at the bar of a local restaurant. We were enjoying a drink and having an appetizer when I noticed a guy standing next to us.

He’d been standing there for a while. He ordered a drink and finished it. He didn’t sit down, even though there were empty seats at the bar. I said hi, and we talked about the football game showing on the TV above the bar. The bartender noticed him standing there as well and asked if he wanted something else.

“I have a reservation. I already told the other guy.” He said, pointing to the other bartender.

The bartender went off to look at the reservation list to see when he could be seated. There were several empty tables including seats at the bar, so it didn’t make sense that he hadn’t been seated yet.

We continued to chat, and he told me he didn’t trust technology and wasn’t surprised the order he placed online was lost. He’d been waiting for a while and, while he expected to have some degree of delay, he thought it would be ready by now.

The bartender came back with the iPad showing the list of reservations and asked, “What name is the reservation under?”

“No, I placed an online order.” He said.

The manager overheard the conversation and said, “Your order is right here. It’s been sitting here ready for you for quite some time.”

She handed him the to go bag, and he headed out of the restaurant.

I thought to myself, Wow, that is such an excellent example of “You Get What You Expect.”

He told me he expected to have problems with the online order, and sure enough, he had problems. Even if he had to create them.

The order was ready on time. The technology worked, the cooking staff got his order right, and it was all packaged up ready for him. Somehow there was a miscommunication. They were looking for his reservation, and he was looking for his order. And he had to wait.

His experience was there was a problem with the order, just like his expectations. His thinking set the wheels in motion for the situation to occur the way it did!

It made me wonder how often I set myself up in the same way.

How often do I set my expectations up so things will go well and they end up going just great? Or the times when I run into problems, I can trace it back to what I was expecting to happen before the actual event?

Next time you find yourself thinking about a particular event in the future, notice how you’re thinking about it. Are you anticipating the success or excitement of it going as you want? Or are you thinking of all the things that can go wrong?

It’s all up to you and is your choice to create the future you want!