• Erik Frederickson

Expectation vs Expectancy in Recovery

What if you’re supposed to expect good things? But how we go about expecting the good things determines what we will end up receiving? I feel it’s safe to say that most people coming out of addiction and into recovery have struggled with hosting a controlling mentality.

Addiction driven mentalities don’t just warp the psyche (soul and spirit), but it also leaves a lingering residue in our thinking and actions. One of the joys of my recovery has been learning how to live in a space of expecting good things to happen as a result of my hard work but losing the expectation of how I think these good things have to happen.

Expectation is a deceitful acquaintance that masquerades as a friend. Imagine a friend whose goal is to continually trick you into thinking that things are always going to go the way you think they should go. While ingraining this intensely counterproductive mode of operation into your psyche this false friend of expectation uses this manipulation to cultivate a victim mentality within you.

By the time someone has allowed expectation to sink its teeth in there is a good chance that the roots entitlement have also sunk deep. This divisive stance then brings us a false sense of superiority and as a result the finger pointing and accusing others of our problems is a byproduct, ultimately positioning ourselves for isolation and unhealthy relationships.

So you may be asking, what’s the difference between expectancy and expectation? I’m glad you asked.

Expectancy is a vastly different mode of operation. Expectancy is a quiet and humble confidence in knowing that if I do my part, God will do His part in bringing about my success. Expectancy is when you go into a situation expecting to gain from it one way or another, but not having to control how that happens.

Expectation is fueled by pride. Expectation is saying that I know best, I know exactly how this should work out, and if it doesn’t someone is to blame.

Expectancy is fueled by knowing that the best is coming my way, but when I try to manipulate how that comes about I shrink my world down to my size, instead of the graceful and expansive world God has for me.

Expectancy is a healthy faith of knowing that good is my portion, I will put in my hard work in relationships, personal life, and career, and I will do everything I can to celebrate others success and help them achieve it.

Out of this reality, I have an expectancy that all the good God has planned for my life will become my reality.

But the controlling way of expectation blinds me from all the endless possibilities where good can come to me and be released through me because I think I know exactly how it should go.

The freeing way of life found in expectancy drives me to receive more than I could ever ask, think, or imagine. I get to enter situations knowing that good is coming my way, but without creating an expectation of how that has to happen in turn blinding myself as to exactly how good has to enter my life.

Are you living in expectation?

Or are you living in expectancy?


Erik is a certified Life Coach and Recovery Coach. He has been coaching people into recovery and more of their life purpose for years.

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