Develop Optimism

Posted Nov 8, 2021

Close

E-mail Article

Complete form to e-mail article…

Required fields are denoted by an asterisk (*) adjacent to the label.

Separate multiple recipients with a comma

Close

Sign-Up For Newsletters

Complete this form to sign-up for newsletters…

Required fields are denoted by an asterisk (*) adjacent to the label.

 

Optimism is a set of beliefs that helps to focus your attention and behavior on the opportunities and possibilities of life. Optimism is not a rose-colored lens, but a clear lens, without distortion, that allows you to see life realistically and clearly.

Optimism allows you to see that opportunities exist even when you face challenges and changes in your life. Pessimism, on the other hand, is an internal stressor that creates a sense of threat around the stressors in life.

Different worldviews

Where the pessimist sees problems, the optimist sees opportunities.

Optimist: All possibilities exist in the world.
Pessimist: The possibilities are more likely negative. Pessimists are often worriers. 

Optimist: Every problem has a solution. If you don't look for it, you won't find it.
Pessimist: The likelihood of success is constantly in doubt.

Optimist: The world is neither fair nor unfair. It simply is.
Pessimist: Life is not fair, but it should be.

Optimist: Success is likely. It’s a result of effort, persistence and ability.
Pessimist: Good outcomes are the result of luck. There is very little that can be done to control events.

Optimist: While truly bad things can happen, they tend not to happen in your personal world. On the occasion that they do, the experience is an opportunity to learn and grow.
Pessimist: Bad things are likely to strike close to home no matter what efforts are made to prevent them from happening. 

Six steps to realistic optimism

Focus on the positive. People frequently focus their attention on what goes wrong, what could go wrong or what almost went wrong. It's important to retrain your thinking and begin to focus on the experiences you have in life that work out well, even when they are not perfect.

Resist the desire to complain. Complaining usually makes you feel worse by keeping your attention on an unhappy situation. Constant griping will distance you from positive people and attracts negative people who encourage anger, hostility and envy.

Decide for yourself what is and isn't possible. Don’t limit yourself to beliefs that say something can't be done. While not everything is possible, many things are dismissed too easily. This is about learning to think outside the box.

Be for things, not against things. This is a critical piece of developing your optimistic approach to life. When you are against something, you focus on creating less. Creating less requires attacking, punishing, complaining and reacting. When you are for something, you focus on creating more. Creating more is about new ideas, options and productivity. Instead of saying "no" to pessimism, say "yes" to optimism.

Laugh at yourself, but not at others. Humor opens you to possibilities. It reminds you that many of the solutions you thought were foolproof in the past weren't, or that many of the limitations you thought were set in stone weren't. Think back to what you thought to be absolutely true 10 years ago. Has any of that changed? Can you laugh at it now?

Optimists don't use humor to hurt others. Avoid the pessimist's use of cynicism and sarcasm as a substitute for genuine humor. Remind yourself on a regular basis that you can increase your sense of accomplishment and well-being by your own efforts. Feeling good about yourself shouldn't require that you put others down, judge them or compare them unfavorably to yourself.

Fake it until you make it. A short cut to changed behavior is to engage in the desired behavior, even if it goes against how you would normally act. Practice new habits even if they feel awkward. One of the best strategies for behavior change is to change behavior first and let your feelings about it catch up. If you put off change until you're comfortable with the idea, you may never change.

Source: Defense Centers of Excellence, National Center for Telehealth and Technology

Optimism is a set of beliefs that helps to focus your attention and behavior on the opportunities and possibilities of life. Optimism is not a rose-colored lens, but a clear lens, without distortion, that allows you to see life realistically and clearly.

Optimism allows you to see that opportunities exist even when you face challenges and changes in your life. Pessimism, on the other hand, is an internal stressor that creates a sense of threat around the stressors in life.

Different worldviews

Where the pessimist sees problems, the optimist sees opportunities.

Optimist: All possibilities exist in the world.
Pessimist: The possibilities are more likely negative. Pessimists are often worriers. 

Optimist: Every problem has a solution. If you don't look for it, you won't find it.
Pessimist: The likelihood of success is constantly in doubt.

Optimist: The world is neither fair nor unfair. It simply is.
Pessimist: Life is not fair, but it should be.

Optimist: Success is likely. It’s a result of effort, persistence and ability.
Pessimist: Good outcomes are the result of luck. There is very little that can be done to control events.

Optimist: While truly bad things can happen, they tend not to happen in your personal world. On the occasion that they do, the experience is an opportunity to learn and grow.
Pessimist: Bad things are likely to strike close to home no matter what efforts are made to prevent them from happening. 

Six steps to realistic optimism

Focus on the positive. People frequently focus their attention on what goes wrong, what could go wrong or what almost went wrong. It's important to retrain your thinking and begin to focus on the experiences you have in life that work out well, even when they are not perfect.

Resist the desire to complain. Complaining usually makes you feel worse by keeping your attention on an unhappy situation. Constant griping will distance you from positive people and attracts negative people who encourage anger, hostility and envy.

Decide for yourself what is and isn't possible. Don’t limit yourself to beliefs that say something can't be done. While not everything is possible, many things are dismissed too easily. This is about learning to think outside the box.

Be for things, not against things. This is a critical piece of developing your optimistic approach to life. When you are against something, you focus on creating less. Creating less requires attacking, punishing, complaining and reacting. When you are for something, you focus on creating more. Creating more is about new ideas, options and productivity. Instead of saying "no" to pessimism, say "yes" to optimism.

Laugh at yourself, but not at others. Humor opens you to possibilities. It reminds you that many of the solutions you thought were foolproof in the past weren't, or that many of the limitations you thought were set in stone weren't. Think back to what you thought to be absolutely true 10 years ago. Has any of that changed? Can you laugh at it now?

Optimists don't use humor to hurt others. Avoid the pessimist's use of cynicism and sarcasm as a substitute for genuine humor. Remind yourself on a regular basis that you can increase your sense of accomplishment and well-being by your own efforts. Feeling good about yourself shouldn't require that you put others down, judge them or compare them unfavorably to yourself.

Fake it until you make it. A short cut to changed behavior is to engage in the desired behavior, even if it goes against how you would normally act. Practice new habits even if they feel awkward. One of the best strategies for behavior change is to change behavior first and let your feelings about it catch up. If you put off change until you're comfortable with the idea, you may never change.

Source: Defense Centers of Excellence, National Center for Telehealth and Technology

Optimism is a set of beliefs that helps to focus your attention and behavior on the opportunities and possibilities of life. Optimism is not a rose-colored lens, but a clear lens, without distortion, that allows you to see life realistically and clearly.

Optimism allows you to see that opportunities exist even when you face challenges and changes in your life. Pessimism, on the other hand, is an internal stressor that creates a sense of threat around the stressors in life.

Different worldviews

Where the pessimist sees problems, the optimist sees opportunities.

Optimist: All possibilities exist in the world.
Pessimist: The possibilities are more likely negative. Pessimists are often worriers. 

Optimist: Every problem has a solution. If you don't look for it, you won't find it.
Pessimist: The likelihood of success is constantly in doubt.

Optimist: The world is neither fair nor unfair. It simply is.
Pessimist: Life is not fair, but it should be.

Optimist: Success is likely. It’s a result of effort, persistence and ability.
Pessimist: Good outcomes are the result of luck. There is very little that can be done to control events.

Optimist: While truly bad things can happen, they tend not to happen in your personal world. On the occasion that they do, the experience is an opportunity to learn and grow.
Pessimist: Bad things are likely to strike close to home no matter what efforts are made to prevent them from happening. 

Six steps to realistic optimism

Focus on the positive. People frequently focus their attention on what goes wrong, what could go wrong or what almost went wrong. It's important to retrain your thinking and begin to focus on the experiences you have in life that work out well, even when they are not perfect.

Resist the desire to complain. Complaining usually makes you feel worse by keeping your attention on an unhappy situation. Constant griping will distance you from positive people and attracts negative people who encourage anger, hostility and envy.

Decide for yourself what is and isn't possible. Don’t limit yourself to beliefs that say something can't be done. While not everything is possible, many things are dismissed too easily. This is about learning to think outside the box.

Be for things, not against things. This is a critical piece of developing your optimistic approach to life. When you are against something, you focus on creating less. Creating less requires attacking, punishing, complaining and reacting. When you are for something, you focus on creating more. Creating more is about new ideas, options and productivity. Instead of saying "no" to pessimism, say "yes" to optimism.

Laugh at yourself, but not at others. Humor opens you to possibilities. It reminds you that many of the solutions you thought were foolproof in the past weren't, or that many of the limitations you thought were set in stone weren't. Think back to what you thought to be absolutely true 10 years ago. Has any of that changed? Can you laugh at it now?

Optimists don't use humor to hurt others. Avoid the pessimist's use of cynicism and sarcasm as a substitute for genuine humor. Remind yourself on a regular basis that you can increase your sense of accomplishment and well-being by your own efforts. Feeling good about yourself shouldn't require that you put others down, judge them or compare them unfavorably to yourself.

Fake it until you make it. A short cut to changed behavior is to engage in the desired behavior, even if it goes against how you would normally act. Practice new habits even if they feel awkward. One of the best strategies for behavior change is to change behavior first and let your feelings about it catch up. If you put off change until you're comfortable with the idea, you may never change.

Source: Defense Centers of Excellence, National Center for Telehealth and Technology

The information provided on the Achieve Solutions site, including, but not limited to, articles, assessments, and other general information, is for informational purposes only and should not be treated as medical, health care, psychiatric, psychological, or behavioral health care advice. Nothing contained on the Achieve Solutions site is intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment or as a substitute for consultation with a qualified health care professional. Please direct questions regarding the operation of the Achieve Solutions site to Web Feedback. If you have concerns about your health, please contact your health care provider.  

 

Close

  • Useful Tools

    Select a tool below

© 2023 Beacon Health Options, Inc.