A Proven Way Expectations Can Unlock A More Positive Life | David Robson

How we think about the world can drastically influence how we navigate through it. Cutting edge research proves that reframing our mindset to be more positive, even in the light of negative events, can significantly alter how our brain responds.

Discussing one of our favorite books of the year, author David Robson explains how our expectations can secretly meddle with almost every aspect of our lives. And by understanding their effects more thoroughly, we can unlock some powerful ways of living a more positive life.

Our expectations are like the air we breathe, because they permeate us. ~ David Robson, Episode 327 Click To Tweet

This is a special episode, not only because we are talking with David Robson about his fantastic book “The Expectation Effect: How Your Mindset Can Change Your World”, but we are co-hosting this episode with one of our favorite podcasters, Christian Hunt of Human Risk Podcast. And just to top it off, the interview is recorded in none other than the iconic Abbey Road Studios in London!

Now that your expectations are set suitably high, we hope we don’t disappoint you with what we think is a fantastic episode of Behavioral Grooves! If Behavioral Grooves Podcast continues to meet your listening expectations please consider helping our ongoing production costs with a Patreon subscription. Many thanks!



(4:20) Welcome and speed round questions.

(7:07) What is the expectation effect?

(8:09) Why the placebo effect doesn’t work on everyone.

(9:36) Our stress response and fluctuations in our cortisol levels.

(13:13) Negative stress mindset vs. positive stress mindset.

(15:00) Does the expectation effect change the way we feel?

(18:16) Is reframing a key component of the expectation effect?

(19:35) David’s journey into exploring expectations.

(22:26) How our mindset can contribute to the outcome of our diet or exercise habit.

(28:41) How marketing sets our expectations.

(33:04) The brain is a prediction machine.

(36:32) Why critical thinking is a tool to manage our expectations.

(39:30) Are you a “good” sleeper or a “bad” sleeper?

(42:35) Being a pessimistic vs an optimistic person.

(45:45) The ethics of expectations – genetic testing.

(50:06) What music David is listening to and our expectations of musicians.

(55:47) Grooving Session with Kurt and Tim discussing The Expectation Effect.


© 2022 Behavioral Grooves


Other Episodes You Will Enjoy

Episode 307, Groove Track | Mind Over Milkshakes: Why Expectations Matter A Lot

Episode 155, John Bargh: Dante, Coffee and the Unconscious Mind

Episode 75: Jonathan Mann: Integrating Behavioral Science into User Experience

Episode 235: Make Choice Rewarding: Behavioral Insights in Marketing with Matthew Willcox

AIRDATE: November 7, 2022 EPISODE 327

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A Proven Way Expectations Can Unlock A More Positive Life | David Robson

Featured Guest

David Robson