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Engineering Optimism

Having a positive outlook on life is truly a blessing.  On the flip side a negative viewpoint on life is a constant struggle.  The question is are we born with a particular outlook that is unchangeable or do we have some control over our particular predilection.

Optimism and pessimism were once considered to be dispositional traits within our DNA makeup. More recent studies conducted into human happiness however are suggesting that rather than being a part of our DNA, both optimism and pessimism are mindsetsthat can be reshaped or redirected depending on a person’s ability toshift their point of view.  

What makes us who we are can be broken down into three key areas: 

–   Our genetic makeup : 50%

–   Our circumstance : 10%

–   Our intention : 40%

Our intention can be further broken down into two key areas– our thoughts and our actions.  It is vitally important we understand the impact this percentage mix has on our lives if we want to maintain a positive perspective.  It is very easy to fall into a pattern of negative thinking.  The world today is in the midst of a negativity tsunami.  Current media studies indicate that for every positive news story in the media there are 17 negative stories.  Since we have no control over our genetics, and our circumstance accounts for very little in the bigger picture, it is our thoughts and actions, the 40% of ourselves we have some control over – where we must focus our energies if we seek to create a positive environment for ourselves.

The Happy Human Book – now available in paperback and ebook

The interview – Scott Williams