What do you expect out of today?

William Liao
1 min readDec 2, 2023

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I used to wear a fitness tracker that would give me a report on my recovery levels every morning.

Interestingly, there would be mornings where I felt great but the tracker said my recovery was poor.

Over time these two things eventually became in sync, as if I’d become conditioned to feel awful whenever the device told me I should be feeling awful.

The term of art here is expectation effects, where we end up having the experience we think we’re going to have.

If I think I’m going to feel awful — guess what: I probably will.

(I ditched the tracker)

Thankfully this phenomenon seems to cut both ways: you’re much more likely to have a good, fulfilling day if you think you’re going to have one.

This doesn’t mean your day will be devoid of obstacles, but the underlying expectation that you will be able to navigate them gracefully can make a huge difference.

So why not choose to have a great day?

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William Liao

Taiwanese American, daily blogger of ideas about impactful work in service of others, photographer (ephemera.photography)