Let’s play a game. Imagine forward to Friday night. It’s 10 PM and your spouse asks you: “Hey honey, want to ‘cuddle’ tonight?”
What would you say? “Ehhm … too tired tonight.” “Darling, 10 PM? We’re not 20 anymore.” “Can’t wait, darling, let me shortly leap into the shower and freshen up.”
Which one are you? If you could choose one, which response would you want it to be?
Looking underneath, what kind of person do you want to be? Someone who looks for a reason not to do something … or the kind of a person who lives a love and life of yes? It’s not just about motivation or sleep or being older than 20. It’s all about the way you approach anything. I’ve always said that you decide how enjoyable your love relationship is. If you want your partner to shower bounty of affection on you not only on Valentine’s Day or get your partner high voltage motivated, begging on his knees to take out the garbage, great – use the finesse of my methods, successfully tested for decades.
The same is true for your entire life. Maybe you’re seeking for achievement, reaching out for the stars and being your best or you’re defined by obligations, avoiding danger and mistakes and being the person others can count on. Psychologists assign those two attitudes to optimists and pessimists.
When you get your mind right – when you choose thoughts that are smart and empowering to you – that’s when you start to shape your love relationship and life in unimaginable ways.
That’s when you start to shift feelings from “boo!” to “ahhh!” – more than you’ve ever thought possible.
Scientific research shows:
– Optimists are healthier and live longer
– Individual optimism affects the proposed length of a relationship
– Students’ levels of optimism correspond with their salaries years later
It’s not that optimism is good, and pessimism is bad.
David Armor, an assistant professor of psychology at Yale states: “Optimism and pessimism bring feelings along with them, and those feelings push us into action more forcefully than any rational prediction could.” Therefore, optimism can have a self-fulfilling aspect. When you’re engaged in an optimistic mindset, you believe that things will work out – you just need to figure out how. That’s why optimistic women are constructive in resolving conflicts, unlike their pessimistic peers. They own a feeling of being in control. It’s about acknowledging the personal contribution to a problem, not looking for a scapegoat and persistently working on winning ways.
Sure, when we are young we might be more likely to be an optimist and when we get older we become more “realist” (which is a nicer word for pessimist). You and I go to the dentist to have a charming smile. We buy new outfits to look better. Yet, we don’t spend even one hour to learn to reverse the aging processes of our minds that shape our entire lives. But when you learn how to train your mind for your purposes and actively rewrite the invisible script in your head then your relationship and life can shift drastically far beyond the horizon of your best imagination.
These three strategies get you from being a pessimistic “realist” to a healthy, happy, winning optimist.
1. Fake it till you make it.
This approach can impact your emotions surprisingly strong and immediate. For example, scientists asked students to act like extroverts for 15 minutes in a group discussion, even if they didn’t feel like it. The more assertive and energetic the students acted, the happier they were. The best aspect about this kind of behavioral change is that it doesn’t require much faith; you’re going to reap the benefits of a positive mindset anyway.
2. Focus on optimistic friends.
Start “slipstreaming” on cheery friends’ optimism. It’s not that a rosy worldview is contagious; it’s just that you’ll feel more positive about your relationship and life. Being together with an optimistic person enhances your well being by an average of 15%.
3. Change your inner voice
Optimists and pessimists apply a different “explanatory” style. When things go wrong, optimists believe that this has little to do with them. Also, they perceive it as one-time problems that will pass quickly. For example, a pessimist who fails to represent his position successfully says, “I’m lousy at communication”; an optimist says, “My opponent has killer arguments.” Finally, provocatively spoken, would you rather be in a relationship with someone who has a cheerful outlook, who is not afraid of challenges or would you prefer to be married to someone with no positive outlook, just getting by, moaning a lot and having a negative talk?
Share your thoughts in the comments below.