What kind of expectations do you have for your day, your week, your life? When you get up in the morning, do you make the effort to have good intentions but as the day goes by and you hit a few rough patches, those expectations morph into negative ones? Maybe it’s just the opposite - you start your day on the wrong foot but somehow the Universe conspires to turn things around for you. It’s a merciful relief, but isn’t there a niggling little sense that you’re somehow at the mercy of whatever winds are blowing?
There are a lot of reasons why holding positive intentions is good for us. It seems obvious, because we’ve all heard about the law of attraction and self-fulfilling prophecies. But did you know that the quality of your expectations affects the body in dramatic ways? Positive and negative expectations have opposite effects on two hormones in particular - cortisol and prolactin. These two hormones are important in activating the immune system. If you believe things won't work out, or there's no hope, your body is a lot less likely to stay strong and healthy. But when you set a positive expectation for yourself, packed with optimism and confidence, your body responds by making efforts to keep you strong and healthy. Trust your body’s wisdom. Listen to it. Learn from it.
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Nina Lockwood, MSW, HTCP, is a healer, teacher and coach.