• Tom Easen

Definition of Optimism/The Power of Optimism

Updated: Nov 5, 2021

Optimism is so important both in the workplace and generally in our everyday lives. This makes our partnership with Elevate to Educate (and the fantastic NFP organisation, Project Optimism) so important to us!

The Definition Of Optimism

There are many ideas out there revolving the definition of optimism, but one particular definition that really sticks out to us is that from Project Optimism’s website;

“Optimism at its core is a belief that things will work out in the end and if they haven’t, it is not the end.”

This is such a great definition as it shows the true power of optimism. It is in each of us, with the ability for optimism to come and go depending on various situations in life. Optimism is a lot more than just putting a smile on your face and getting on with the day, it’s about knowing that no matter what happens, your problems are not what defines you. Your problems are not a barrier trapping you inside. It all goes back to that famous metaphor of a glass half full or a glass half empty - it’s all about perspective. But luckily, optimism is something that can be learnt and we can all be trained to think and feel more optimistic!

This is especially important in a business because this optimism can really help motivate the team to produce it’s best material and really push the whole company forward!

Optimism is linked to mindfulness and positivity. Here are a few ways to improve your mindfulness and thus, your level of optimism:

  • Give yourself credit! - often people analyse situations and focus on all the negatives, especially about themselves and give themselves little, or even no credit!

  • Think about your strengths - what can your strengths bring to yourself or other people’s lives?

  • Minimise negativity - Sometimes you don’t notice what is causing such negativity to you and your life - try to work out where the negativity is coming from why keep that around?

  • Think about the best future for you - Start putting yourself first!

  • Remember, Tomorrow is Another Day

For more tips on being more of an optimistic, check out this article by Dr Elizabeth Scott here

The Power of Optimism

Optimism has some crazy power! Not only can it affect your mood, outlook and even your workplace, but there are quite a few incredible health benefits from being optimistic!

Looking into an article by Harvard Medical School it is suggested that optimism could be responsible for helping prevent many illnesses. For example, there was a study done over 10 years on heart disease in which scientists from Harvard and Boston University evaluated over 1000 men with an average age of 61. Many variables were evaluated, including if the men were optimistic or pessimistic. Before the study, none of these men had any reported heart issues, however over the 10 years, it was recorded than more than twice as many pessimists had a heart disease compared to the optimistic men. Isn’t that just crazy? The article also talks about optimism on blood pressure, cardiac patients, survival, overall health and the potential links between optimism and its impact on our health. Definitely worth looking into!

Furthermore Forbes did an article on the power of optimism which is a really interesting read too! It states that, even though our brain is typically only designed to last so long, we can maintain a strong and creative mind through optimism and thus, optimism can increase your lifespan which is estimated to be by nearly 8 years, according to Dr Medina. The science behind this revolves around pessimists being a lot more likely to get into clinical depression which causes many other problems, including your immune system beginning to go offline, and as a result, stress hormones rise and attack certain cells in the immune system.

Optimism however, not only reduces stress dramatically, but is also promotes dopamine which is the hormone that really makes you feel empowered and motivated. As stated by Dr Medina in the Forbes article; “Dopamine is a big deal.”

Furthermore, Dr Medina suggests two great exercises to help increase dopamine and thus, optimism, which can even work in the workplace!

  1. The gratitude visit: To perform the gratitude visit, identify someone who means a lot to you. Write that person a 300-word letter that concretely explains how that person has influenced your life. Visit the person and read the letter out loud. Seligman’s research found an immediate boost in the writer’s happiness that lasted a week after the visit and lingered for another month

  2. Three Good Things: I recently met a successful CEO who practices this exercise at the end of each and every day. He says it works wonders. Recall three positive things that happened during the day. They can be small or big things. Write them down. Beside each positive remark, describe why the good thing happened. For example, “My nephew got into college of his choice because he worked hard at school.”

Taken directly from article here by Forbes

If you are interested in trying to learn how to be optimistic, everydaypower.com looked into what makes an optimistic person and what qualities they have. Here is a list of 5 qualities that make an optimistic person, and if you are struggling to be optimistic, these qualities might be worth looking into adapting:

  1. Being self-motivated

  2. Surrounding yourself with positive people

  3. Express Gratitude

  4. Don’t listen to the naysayers

  5. Be happy and joyful

Here at Qintil, we believe optimism is so important, both personally, for health and for businesses which is why we are so happy and excited by our partnership with Elevate to Educate and Project Optimism!

Check out more about Educate to Elevate and the services we can offer thanks to this partnership here - https://courses.qintil.com/Courses/Provider/educate-to-elevate

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