While teaching English as a second language in China for four years, I decided to write a book and titled it "The Little Red Book: Teaching ESL in China". My husband, Frank, contributed the sketches for each chapter and we were happy with the results. The consequence came about when we tried to promote the book at the next ESL teacher gathering. The truthful stories revealed to us by other ESL teachers and our Chinese English teacher colleagues all appeared in the book along with our discovery of how the Communist system of government in China could be acted out in the classroom, much to the benefit of the teacher.
We were denied the privilege of promoting the book to our peers and left the conference feeling rejected and humiliated. My husband and I talked for long hours about our expectation that the book would be welcomed as a learning tool for new teachers and experienced instructors alike. We decided in the end that we would be wise not to have any expectations at all. What a relief! Reducing our expectations since then has opened our hearts and minds to what would naturally unfold.