When selling products at shows, there is a distinct type of let-down felt when a usually successful show turns out otherwise. It is quite different from poor sales at a new event, where the success of the show is unknown, or somewhere where sales have been poor in the past.
It all comes down to expectations. If you go into an event expecting success, the joy is less when you are successful and the disappointment worse when you are not. On the other hand, if you expect failure, you won’t be disappointed when you fail, and you’ll be overjoyed when you succeed.
Looking at the end results of expectations, the next logical step is that it’s a good idea to always expect failure. After all, then you won’t ever be disappointed and you’ll be very happy if you succeed. However, there is a glaring flaw in that logic: your performance.
If you go into everything expecting it to fail, you will put less effort into it. Worse, you’ll likely be unhappy, which will have a negative impact on everything you do. As a result, you’ll be less likely to succeed.
Ah hah! says Logic. In that case, expecting to succeed should make you more likely to succeed! And yes, that is true – but only to a certain degree. The sad truth is that it is far easier to fail than succeed. Yes, you’re more likely to succeed if you’re expecting success, but there are too many elements outside your control for that alone to lead to success. In other words, by expecting success, you are setting yourself up for that special kind of disappointment while stealing the joy from your success.
It is far better to approach things without any expectations at all. Or, as another way of looking at it, with curiosity. I wonder how this will turn out; let’s find out! You keep an open mind, striving for success while leaving yourself open to the joy of achieving it. And if you’re headed for failure, well, just make the best of the situation and try to mitigate your disappointment.
Having expectations doesn’t help with anything. It’s just our way of trying to predict the future, which we really can’t. Or, if you can, you really need to invite me to a racetrack some day.
Click here to find the charity anthology containing a couple of my short stories.