The benefits of optimism
What you say to yourself when you experience stress or adversity influences your performance, your mood and your physical well-being. Researchers have studied optimists and pessimists and have found that there are many advantages to an optimistic view. Optimism is linked to happiness and achievement. It improves health, reduces susceptibility to disease and enhances recovery. Optimistic students often get better grades and optimistic salespeople sell more.
Optimism is a way of thinking and a skill that can be learned by challenging your thought patterns.
Stop for a moment and think. How do you define a glass of water filled half way?
Is the glass half full or half empty?
It is both, but you will be much better off if you think it is half-full.
What you need is willingness and a few extra minutes to consistently examine your thoughts and focus on the positive perspective.
Reflection and application
The next time something positive happens in your life, stop and analyze your thought process:
- Are you giving yourself true credit for it?
- Think that all the inner strengths that supported your success can also be used to create other positive events in your life.
- Consider the permanent effects of positivity.
- See how much of your life is affected by it.
The next time something bad happens to you:
- Be aware that it isn’t necessarily a reflection of a personal weakness.
- Assume it will not last for long, see it as a short-lived experience.
- Think of it as an isolated event that has no bearing on future events or other areas of your life
- Look at what isn’t affected in your life.
- Don’t fall into self-blame.
- Remember that you will have endless opportunities to do better in the future.
- Think of your next potential success.
- When was the last time you had a pessimistic approach about something that had a positive outcome anyway?
- What can you learn from this?
Create and practice five positive affirmations daily.
Here are some suggestions:
- I can do something to change this situation for the better
- I can handle whatever comes
- Challenges bring opportunities
- I expect the best when faced with uncertainty
- For every obstacle there is a solution
Keep a gratitude journal
Optimists amplify positive thinking through appreciation. Writing a gratitude journal will help you focus on what you have instead of what you lack of and your difficulties.
What seems impossible one minute becomes, through faith possible the next
Norman Vincent Peale