The more balanced and positive your mental and emotional state is, the more your choices, behavior, actions and results reflect that, and your experience of life improves.
While we can look at research that shows some potential benefits of optimism, and linkages between the level of a person’s optimism and things like their health and longevity, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist or research studies to tell us what we already know inherently…
We’re smart enough to know that if we think more positively and feel more optimistic, everything else in our life feels a little bit (or a lot) easier.
And the MOST important 2 things to know about optimism upfront are:
- You are NOT born an optimist, and you are NOT born a pessimist. These are LEARNED ways of being and behaving, which we pick up through our life to date, due to how our mindset has been conditioned. So as an adult you can CHOOSE and REcondition your mind to whatever outlook you prefer.
- Optimism is NOT denying reality. It is not being lost in la-la land filled with false rainbows, fairies and unicorns! It is a deliberate choice to keep one’s mind and heart open, to bring conscious awareness, free will and possibility to any situation we may face. It is the intelligence to know that your own perception influences your life outcomes.
I used to think I was an optimist. Until I had a clinical hypnosis session for a health issue I was facing, and the practitioner suggested I might benefit from learning how to be an optimist! Shocked, I dug into this to understand what he meant, and discovered that in fact I was demonstrating the traits of a pessimist! Sneaky little negative tendencies that were masquerading as “being a realist”.
From first hand experience, I can attest that:
- You can absolutely change from being a pessimist to an optimist, and
- It does improve your life in endless ways!
I would not be healthy now, nor would I have the life I dreamed of, if I had not chosen to be an optimist. Least of all because a pessimist viewpoint would be, “I can’t heal, and I can’t have the life of my dreams, so what’s the point!”. End of story. But optimism is a different story, with a different, more magical, beautiful ending.
In case you've missed my other resources about how to identify pessisim in action so you can catch it and retrain yourself, below are 4 common things that pessimists do. It’s super important to understand this mind pattern so that if it happens to you, you’ll be able to transform it:
- Interpretation of situations/people is immediately negative as a starting point.
- Exaggeration or expansion of the negativity (feeding it, growing it, looking for more of it, making it worse than it is)
- Assumption that the negative thing/situation/person is pervasive or permanent (“this will never change”, “there is no way out”, “this is doomed”, “there is no solution”)
- Projection of the negativity beyond the context of the situation (interpreting that it will negatively affect all areas of your life, vs containing it to the specific situation).
As you notice these patterns, hold absolute LOVE & COMPASSION for yourself. Remember pessimism is learned (often early on in life before we’re even self aware enough to know any better). We’re all human, and we all experience these areas for growth. It’s no problem!
AND… pessimistic tendencies are easily turned around to new, powerful, life changing optimism.
We need this understanding if we want to jump further forward in our mental and emotional wellbeing, and into a better life. For how can we change in ourselves what we don’t see or understand?
So, in coaching video below, we cover:
- The 3 steps of an optimist
- How these simple steps will interrupt and replace pessimistic patterns.
- And you'll see why this INSTANTLY works, every time!
3 Steps to Be An Optimist
Practice the 3 steps of an optimist below. As situations or experiences unfold in your day, or as any thoughts about the present or future come up – say to yourself…
- CONSCIOUSLY INTERPRETING – What is a neutral (or positive) way of interpreting this situation? Remember neutral is always available – as it’s simply focusing on the pure facts without any meaning added, no
judgement, no opinion.
- GRATEFUL – What am I grateful for? Look for something to be grateful for in/around the situation
or simply in your life generally (giving thanks for something already in existence shifts your energy state immediately and helps you to feel lighter).
- OPTIMISTIC – What is a new possibility? Open your mind up to the endless array of possibilities that might be available going forward, even simply by acknowledging there ARE possibilities that you can’t see right now.
An easy reminder is the acronym C G O.
Conscious interpretation, gratitude, optimism!