Throughout the years of study and practice in coaching and positive psychology I have learned there are some core essential habits that highly optimistic people practice.
In one of the coaching courses I took, we called this the circle of personal perspective.
In courses I have taken on Positive Psychology and in several books written by Martin Seligman, this is called PERMAV.
However you choose to call it, there are core themes that come through that are time tested and true.
Fortunately, optimism is a learned trait, here are practical habits to assist you in becoming more positive in 2016.
What is optimism? It’s a state of hopefulness and confidence about the future. It’s also a state we can train ourselves to adopt.
~ We can resist pessimism.
~ Assert control.
~ And Learn to appreciate setbacks as what they really are–opportunities.
Want to move forward now? Here are some suggestions:
1. Time to see what’s in your feed.
The news feeds that we come across affects our positivity for better or worse.
So, take the time to see who you are following, watch your notifications and make changes if someone is sharing things you do not want to see. Unfollow those social media feeds that routinely post negative thoughts, and follow more positive people and organizations instead. (Note: For example, you can find Jennifer on Twitter @jenniferjimbere)
2. Develop strong friendships.
Spending time with supportive people who share our passions can help us be happier in the moment, and more optimistic about the future.
One of the building blocks of a good life is relationships. Experiencing affection, friendship and love are important elements of a good life. What are the relationships you have in family, leisure and life? How could you improve upon them and make those relationships stronger?
3. Practice Gratitude.
We all experience positive emotions such as happiness, satisfaction and cheerfulness, try to capture and recall those moments in a gratitude journal once a week once you’ve practiced the exercise below.
In positive psychology, there is an exercise called “3 good things” or “what went well.” Every day for 3 weeks, sit down in the evening and write down 3 things that went well during the day. It won’t take long–a few days or weeks–and you’ll realize that your life, no matter how difficult or stressful, is full of blessings.
4. Seek out inspiration.
Rather than following the negative ad campaigns of the election on TV, try replacing them with a good book, following other positive people on Facebook and seek out inspirational websites to book mark and go back to when you need a lift. At Jimbere Coaching and Consulting, I have a tab dedicated to this called inspiration.
5. Increase your mindfulness and meaning.
Research has proven that believing in and working towards something that transcends ourselves and our lifetimes increases our vitality. Taking good care of ourselves with enough sleep, mindful practices such as Loving Kindness Meditation can all help us live a good life and are practices of highly optimistic people.
6. Serve others.
One of the most practical ways to be more hopeful about the future is to realize that you can and do make a difference in people’s lives. By focusing on helping others, we gain the added benefit of increasing our own levels of happiness and optimism.
You’ll find inside many organizations, the high achieving individuals take on role of mentor and give-back as a way to show their appreciation for the level of success they have reached themselves. When they experience a sense of achievement on a regular basis they reach out to serve others.
Your circle of personal perspective is different than anyone else’s as are the building blocks of your life. Each of these habits can help increase your positive emotions, engagement, relationships, meaning, achievement and vitality which are the elements that Martin Seligman coined PERMAV.
Wishing you all a 2016 beyond expectation, here’s to your increased optimism.
How would you like to maximize your personal and business performance and increase your optimism?Jennifer Jimbere is the President of Jimbere Coaching and Consulting. Unleash your strengths, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Maintain momentum and make it a great day!
Image credit and artist: LA artist and old friend Jennifer Verge
Inspired by: My email sign off:)