This is an optimistic thought! “I think I can. I know I can.”
During my research and interviews of resilient women. I came across coach, Julie Donelly. I was impressed with her optimistic perspective. Optimism is a mindset characterized by a hopeful and positive outlook on life, even in the face of challenges and setbacks.
Julie innately knew the benefits of optimism which researchers such as Martin Seligman affirm.
Benefits of Optimism
- Improved Mental Health: Optimistic individuals tend to experience lower levels of stress, anxiety, and depression. They are better equipped to cope with life’s difficulties and bounce back from setbacks, which contributes to better mental health.
- Enhanced Resilience: Optimism is closely tied to resilience. When you believe that setbacks are temporary and that you can learn and grow from them, you are more likely to persevere through difficult times. This resilience can lead to greater long-term happiness.
- Positive Relationships: Optimistic individuals often have more positive and supportive relationships. Their positive outlook can be infectious, making them more enjoyable to be around and improving their social connections.
- Improved Physical Health: Optimism is associated with better physical health and longevity. People who maintain a positive outlook are more likely to engage in healthy behaviors and take better care of themselves.
- Increased Goal Achievement: Optimists tend to set and pursue more ambitious goals. Their belief in their ability to achieve these goals can drive them to work harder and persist longer, ultimately leading to greater success and satisfaction.
- Greater Satisfaction: Optimistic individuals often report higher life satisfaction and overall well-being. They tend to focus on the positive aspects of their lives and find joy in everyday experiences.
- Reduced Rumination: Optimists are less likely to dwell on negative thoughts and ruminate about past mistakes. This can free up mental space for positive and productive thinking, leading to increased happiness.
- Stress Management: Optimism can act as a buffer against the harmful effects of stress. When you approach stressful situations with a positive mindset, you are less likely to experience the negative health effects associated with chronic stress.
- Increased Creativity: Optimistic individuals tend to be more creative and open to new ideas. This can lead to a more fulfilling and innovative life.
Dr. Martin Seligman’s findings on an optimistic perspective are described in his book, Learned Optimism.
To help your optimism, I share Julie’s tips for developing optimism and an expectancy of good.
10 Tips to Increase Optimistic Thinking
- Move like an optimist! It is impossible to feel depressed while you smile, briskly walk, or dance to happy music. The majority of songs are about unhappy topics. Throw them away so you don’t brainwash yourself into feeling sad. Sing and dance to happy songs.
- Self-talk can hurt or uplift you. You can look in the mirror and recite a long list of negative descriptions or you can look in the mirror and speak kindly. Think of how you would treat someone you care about and then treat yourself in that way.
- Visualize your negative-thought gremlins. See yourself swooping them up in a canvas bag. Tie them up with mental ropes and fling those gremlins deep into the ocean. Then take a deep breath and feel free.
- When you first wake spend five minutes thinking about your blessings. Say them out loud. Feel grateful for the sun rising, your good health, a comfy mattress, and a pillow or the roof over your head. It doesn’t matter what you are grateful for, it only matters that you are grateful. Dig deep and find five minutes worth of gratefulness each morning.
- Write out these questions and tape them on the bathroom mirror. At least put them someplace you’ll see them first thing in the morning. Ask yourself: “What could possibly happen today that will be better than what happened yesterday?” “What will I learn today that will help me grow in the direction of my goals?” These questions presuppose that something will happen to lead you the way you want to go.
- Write a list of your life goals. You deserve to have a plan and not have life happen to you. Look for one of the dozens of books or teachers who show you effective ways to figure out your goals.
- List everything you have accomplished from learning how to ride a bike to earning a degree. Place it somewhere convenient so you can easily add to the list. The more the better! This list can be a life-long project.
- Consider the influence of your friends and with whom you spend the most time. If people typically feel upbeat, they will lift you; if they typically feel angry or depressed, they will drag you down.
- Read uplifting books such as Jack Canfield’s The Success Principles and actually do the suggested activities.
- Look deep into a mirror. See your spirit. Say to yourself; “You are not a human being having a spiritual experience. You are a spiritual being having a human experience.”
Do Julie proud and develop your optimistic thinking!