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9 Signs That You’re An Optimist

9 Signs That You’re An Optimist

Martin E. P. Seligman, psychologist, educator and author, in his book Learned Optimism says: “One of the most significant findings in psychology in the last twenty years is that individuals can choose the way they think.” You can choose to think positively and see the good things around you, or you can choose to think negatively and only see the negative things around you. It’s all up to you.

It is advisable, however, that you think more positively. A positive outlook in life makes you happier, healthier and even wealthier in the long run. Of course, stuff happens and unrelenting optimism can sometimes be contrived and irresponsible. But being optimistic is not about unrelenting optimism; it’s about trusting that good will happen while also preparing for the worst.

Here are a few things optimists do differently you can emulate today to look on the brighter side of life.

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1. You count your blessings.

It all starts with counting your blessings. While others moan and groan, optimists take stock of the good things around them. It does not stop there; optimists also take inventory of what’s not so great. They are grateful for obstacles, hardships and even failures because these are anchor points for resilience and wisdom. Optimists know what doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger.

2. You make the most of all opportunities.

Optimists believe in making optimal use of the opportunities life throws at them. They are not blind, in denial or naïve to the risks and dangers involved in taking chances, but rather look at the bigger picture, the resources available and then make every opportunity count for a much brighter future full of possibilities. Optimists are simply positive, visionary realists, not idealists.

3. You believe in yourself.

While others cower and doubt their own abilities, optimists believe they are good enough just the way they are and constantly strive to get better. They trust their own intuition and abilities when carrying out their day-to-day activities. Optimists simply won’t judge or criticize themselves against a set of arbitrary, unrealistic, third party beliefs and ideals, such as those from popular media or peers. They don’t need everyone’s approval; they just do what feels right in their hearts.

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4. You also believe in others.

Optimists not only believe in themselves, but also in other people in their lives. They inspire others to be the best they can be. They know that when you treat a person as he or she is, that person will remain so. But if you treat a person as he or she ought to be, that person will become what he or she ought be. Optimists simply see sparks of good in others — sparks that everyone else won’t see — and work to turn the sparks into a roaring flame.

5. You use positive self-talk to reinforce actions.

Optimists do not allow present circumstances or environment to dictate their attitude and mood. They use positive self-talk to express their hopes and to reinforce good attitudes, outcomes and actions. If things are not going too well, they say things like “I know there’s a problem here, but I can solve it” and keep going. When they succeed at something, they say things like “That’s just as I had anticipated; I worked hard and it paid off.” In a similar situation, a pessimist might say: “Boy, was I lucky to close that deal!”

6. You turn envy and jealousy into catalysts for success.

Everybody gets a little jealous sometimes. While others burn with envy, optimists realize that the universe does not owe them anything because someone else is successful and they are not. However, the universe might owe you something when you work hard to better yourself. Instead of burning with anger and jealousy, optimists use other people’s success as motivation to work hard and bring success.

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7. You don’t make bad experiences a self-fulfilling prophecy of what lies ahead.

Just because you failed or suffered today doesn’t mean you will fail or suffer tomorrow. Good things come to those who persist and overcome challenges. Optimists do not let past misfortunes determine their future success. They know that bad experiences make you stronger and the path to success clearer.

8. You choose not to blame others.

People tend to point fingers at others when things are not going well. They blame their family, politicians and even the economy for their problems. Optimists choose not to blame others because they know others don’t hold complete control over them. There is always something you can do to make things better. Change starts from within, and where there is a will there is always a way.

9. You forgive.

Optimists know better than to underestimate the power of forgiveness. Martin Luther King Jr. fought hate with love. He recognized the past is the past and forgiveness was the path to a better future for everyone. Optimists, therefore, forgive and forge ahead. They know tomorrow is another day and another opportunity to correct what needs correcting and create a brighter reality.

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Are you an optimist?

More by this author

David K. William

David is a publisher and entrepreneur who tries to help professionals grow their business and careers, and gives advice for entrepreneurs.

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Last Updated on January 18, 2019

7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

Some people will have a rain cloud hanging over them, no matter what the weather is outside. Their negative attitude is toxic to your own moods, and you probably feel like there is little you can do about it.

But that couldn’t be farther from the truth.

If you want to effectively deal with negative people and be a champion of positivity, then your best route is to take definite action through some of the steps below.

1. Limit the time you spend with them.

First, let’s get this out of the way. You can be more positive than a cartoon sponge, but even your enthusiasm has a chance of being afflicted by the constant negativity of a friend.

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In fact, negativity has been proven to damage your health physically, making you vulnerable to high levels of stress and even cardiac disease. There’s no reason to get hurt because of someone else’s bad mood.

Though this may be a little tricky depending on your situation, working to spend slightly less time around negative people will keep your own spirits from slipping as well.

2. Speak up for yourself.

Don’t just absorb the comments that you are being bombarded with, especially if they are about you. It’s wise to be quick to listen and slow to speak, but being too quiet can give the person the impression that you are accepting what’s being said.

3. Don’t pretend that their behavior is “OK.”

This is an easy trap to fall into. Point out to the person that their constant negativity isn’t a good thing. We don’t want to do this because it’s far easier to let someone sit in their woes, and we’d rather just stay out of it.

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But if you want the best for this person, avoid giving the false impression that their negativity is normal.

4. Don’t make their problems your problems.

Though I consider empathy a gift, it can be a dangerous thing. When we hear the complaints of a friend or family member, we typically start to take on their burdens with them.

This is a bad habit to get into, especially if this is a person who is almost exclusively negative. These types of people are prone to embellishing and altering a story in order to gain sympathy.

Why else would they be sharing this with you?

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5. Change the subject.

When you suspect that a conversation is starting to take a turn for the negative, be a champion of positivity by changing the subject. Of course, you have to do this without ignoring what the other person said.

Acknowledge their comment, but move the conversation forward before the euphoric pleasure gained from complaining takes hold of either of you.

6. Talk about solutions, not problems.

Sometimes, changing the subject isn’t an option if you want to deal with negative people, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still be positive.

I know that when someone begins dumping complaints on me, I have a hard time knowing exactly what to say. The key is to measure your responses as solution-based.

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You can do this by asking questions like, “Well, how could this be resolved?” or, “How do you think they feel about it?”

Use discernment to find an appropriate response that will help your friend manage their perspectives.

7. Leave them behind.

Sadly, there are times when we have to move on without these friends, especially if you have exhausted your best efforts toward building a positive relationship.

If this person is a family member, you can still have a functioning relationship with them, of course, but you may still have to limit the influence they have over your wellbeing.

That being said, what are some steps you’ve taken to deal with negative people? Let us know in the comments.

You may also want to read: How to Stop the Negative Spin of Thoughts, Emotions and Actions.

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