Are You An Optimist or a Pessimist? – Careful, It Can Change Your Life!
Whether your outlook is of optimism or pessimism, the choice is ultimately yours. Since thoughts, expectations, and beliefs influence behavior, it is important to understand just how crucial your thinking is to results you experience.
How have your experiences shaped your perceptions and behavior? Do your thoughts, expectations, and beliefs serve you well and help you to attain what you want in your life?
Whether your outlook is a tendency to hope for the best or an inclination to expect the worst, the choice is ultimately yours. Since thoughts, expectations, and beliefs influence behavior, it is important to understand just how crucial your thinking is to the results you experience.
If you have conditioned yourself over the years to embrace thoughts and actions that are pessimistic in nature and that deter you from achieving what you truly desire, you are not alone. As we move through life, from childhood into adulthood, we absorb beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors from others and circumstances that may or may not serve us well.
Perhaps you have recognized certain beliefs and behaviors that you hold and wish you could see things differently. This leads us to ask, "Is it possible to change habitual but unproductive ways of thinking and make those changes last?" And, "Can we choose to be different and then actually do it, even after many years of conditioning?"
The answer is YES! Yes, you can change your attitude and behavior.
In studies established by Dr. Martin Seligman of the University of Pennsylvania, he discovered two very important findings. First, pessimistic, or helpless, attitudes are not inherited, inborn traits. They are learned and gradually acquired. Second, because they are learned, they can also be unlearned --- and new and more desirable beliefs and behaviors can be established.
Dr. Seligman found that optimists tend to live more successful lives and sometimes live longer as well. They enjoy higher levels of achievement, better health, and have less trouble with depression. People with optimistic thought patterns cope better with setbacks, obstacles, and failure. Most importantly, optimism can be learned and taught.
When a belief is changed, so does the associated behavior. And a changed behavior leads to different results. Because thoughts, expectations, and beliefs do influence behavior, it is well worth taking the time and effort to focus on any changes you want to address. It is critical to keep in mind that you have the power to retain, modify, or discard the thoughts and beliefs that you possess.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
David Schaefer is a success coach and writes on the topics of personal development and successful Internet marketing. He offers a FREE AUDIO CD for entrepreneurs about Breakthrough Success at http://DiscoverMillionDollarDesire.com -- also visit http://DiscoverMillionDollarDesire.com/blog