And put your life on steroids
Are you an optimist?
If you believe your happiness comes from inside you and that there is some more-or-less stable and predictable order to life, you are probably an optimist.
If you believe you have relatively little or no control over events and that they occur without any predictable order or pattern, you probably lean to the pessimistic end of the spectrum.
If you’re an optimist, you:
- See beyond past and current failures and focus on the triumphs and successes of tomorrow.
- Don’t generalize a setback as likely to be pervasive and are more able to put it fully in its context – understanding that a new context promises a new outcome.
- View the causes for a failure or obstacle as circumstantial and thus don’t shoulder all the blame yourself.
According to Inc., “optimists outperform pessimists on the job by as much as 50 percent.” One reason is that risk taking is fundamental for achieving anything new and you have to be an optimist to take those risks.
Optimism is a star quality that means faster recovery from failures.
Optimism finds opportunity where pessimists find problems and make life miserable and the work harder for those around them.
Optimistic leaders breed happier and more engaged employees, so it is smart business to be optimistic and have your optimism rub off onto others. Your staff, vendors and customers will be happier and more likely to want to work with you. You are also more likely to spot opportunities.
An environment that rewards solutions and discourages negativity is generally more productive and has less stress. It bolsters morale, making you and your staff happier, more confident and resilient and, ultimately, healthier.
Nothing new is accomplished without hope. Encountering obstacles is inevitable in business. Positive thinking softens the blows and fans desires for the future.
What is optimism?
Optimism is a positive perspective, attitude, mindset or way of being.
It shows up as a tendency to see the good in things and as trust and goodwill toward others. It is revealed as a fundamental confidence in self, the world and everyone in it.
As human beings, we are remarkably optimistic. This is a good thing, because research has shown how strongly optimism correlates with a variety of positive life outcomes. Researchers connect it to success, health and recovery from illness.
Optimistic people cope better with stress and adversity and are likely to live longer than those with a less rosy outlook.
How to cultivate optimism
The stress of a serous disappointment or loss can wear you down and make you more pessimistic. Reverse the process: recognize where you are, and realign and re-tune your thoughts to more and more positive considerations.
- When resources are limited, focus on what you can do with what is available. Find ways to substitute, make a plan, scale back plans, alter the goal or time frame or make some other adjustment to optimize what you can achieve.
- Even when things don’t turn out right, recognize what you learned or how much did go right to get things this far. If you look hard enough, or take the time to find the right perspective, there is always a “silver lining.”
- Rather than complaining, you find something to be grateful for. If there is something you can do to make the situation better, you should. If not, look for a reason to be grateful, even if it is simply that things are not even worse.
“It’s snowing still,” said Eeyore gloomily.
“So it is.”
“Yes,” said Eeyore. “However,” he said, brightening up a little,
“we haven’t had an earthquake lately.” ~ A.A. Milne
- When facing failure, take heart in your own or others’ past successes. The simple act of thinking of success and achievement lifts your spirits and stops you giving in to despondency Count failure as proof of effort.
- When doubts or fears become reality, think about how to prevent a repetition. Think back on the warning signs or “should have known betters” and figure out what you would do differently next time.
- Understand there are some things you cannot control. Know when to let things go. Two of the most unpredictable and unmanageable things are mother nature and human nature. We are imperfect beings and it is an imperfect world. Life’s Instruction Manual can help.
- Look for fulfillment in the moment. Another day will come in time. Focus on this moment. What gifts does it hold for you?
- Allow setbacks to make you more determined.Like Thomas Edison, keep trying different things until you find a way that works.
- Actively seek good news.Don’t be at the mercy of mainstream headlines. Seek out publications and sites dealing with subjects and fields of interest to you.
Science is coming up with more and more ways to train our brains. We now know it is possible to rewire the circuits in our brains through training.
That means we can all be more optimistic and have a brighter future!