What were you expecting
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“Consciously or unconsciously, you always get what you expect.”

— Robert Anthony

Hello there! This dispatch is all about the surreal circumstance of ‘expectations’ – anticipating your assumptions to be correct, setting standards for your work to live up to, or even fearing how your expectations might fall through.


Some say the key to happiness is aligning our expectations with reality. Expecting the best can lead to disappointment while setting expectations low can provide delightful surprise.

As humans it seems impossible to not create expectations for ourselves and others so it’s tempting to expect less, to trade frustration for easy satisfaction.

At &yet we’ve learned the importance of honestly examining our expectations and clearly communicating them. Once explained and understood, expectations (especially lofty ones) become incredibly potent tools for encouragement and empowerment. The results are valuable, creative, and more often than not, delightfully surprising.


How to Become Batman


What if someone told you that you might not need eyes to see? This intriguing podcast from NPR looks at how expectations form social constructs.


The weight is a gift

by Adam Brault

In this recent post for the Pastry Box Project, Adam shares some personal lessons on expectations and dealing with hard realities outside our control.


Email is for setting expectations

by Elizabeth Grace Saunders

If you feel more like Sisyphus than an email master, you’ll definitely want to read Elizabeth’s approach to staking a claim on your inbox sanity.


Over to you

How the Tims reframe things

  • Tim Golen shared, “I just had a conversation with my co-worker yesterday about this. He was trying to fix a bug that was only revealed when JS was minified, which made it extremely tricky to track down. I told him that sometimes it‘s worth taking the time to implement the feature in a completely different way from scratch to see if it can be made less buggy.”
  • Tim Craft shared a trick for reframing: “...if you find yourself thinking ‘But what if...’ you ‘flip it.’ So for example, if you’re thinking ‘But what if it fails!?’ you reframe that to ‘But what if it succeeds!?’”

What We’re Doing



When have you been pleasantly surprised by having your expectations exceeded? Let us know and we’ll share it in a future dispatch (just reply to this email).

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