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Published on April 2nd, 2013 | by Jason Goldberg

Are you an Optimist or a Pessimist? Hint: It has nothing to do with the content of the “glass”

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Hey all you Creatives and Creators, This is Jason Goldberg and You are watching MEometryTV, THE place to be to yearn more, learn more and earn more from your life and business.

Today on MEometryTV, I want to ask you a very important question.  Are you an optimist or a pessimist?  Sounds like an easy question but do you REALLY know the difference?

Martin Seligman, a psych prof at the University of Pennsylvania, defined them in a way I (and you may) have never seen.

Everyone experiences failures or setbacks, God knows I have!

But these speed bumps happen to an optimist, they automatically assume that the negative event is temporary and can only affect a small part of their lives.  They know that the setback is changeable; they can do something about it and do not become helpless by misinterpreting the “event” as an ending!

Total 180 for a pessimist; they see this same occurrence as permanent and that it will affect their entire life!  Their “give up” reaction kicks in and they believe there is NOTHING they can do about it.

Sound like anyone you know….be honest!

On the flip side, when a good thing happens to an optimist, they see THAT as being more permanent and that it will affect their entire life while the pessimist flip-flops to thinking the GOOD thing is only temporary and only affects a minute and specific part of their existence.

So apparently, whether the glass is half full or half empty is irrelevant.  If you are an optimist and the liquid level is low, you know that you can do something about it, fill it up, find another glass to drink from and that regardless of it all, it’s just one glass and doesn’t represent the totality of ALL glasses.

If you are a pessimist, the water level is not only half but it will surely (and permanently) be gone at some point soon and there is nothing you can do to affect that “fact”.  Further, even if you could slow down the evaporation of the liquid, it wouldn’t matter because that glass holds all of your hopes, dreams, beliefs and realities within it.  When it is gone, you are gone.  Hell of an ending, no?

Ready for the good news? I surely am!  Optimism CAN BE LEARNED (in fact “Learned Optimism” is one of Seligman’s books on the subject) and how cool is it that you can start “learning” it, simply by changing the story you are telling yourself.

Instead of self-talking yourself (that sounds weird) with a negative story about how the world is over because of a particular event, instead self-talk yourself (still sounds weird) with an alternate story to empower and challenge yourself to move past the bad thing, bounce back and keep moving forward.

Keep exercising your resiliency muscle and VOILA, you are an optimist!  Easy peasy!  J

Your mind, body and soul will thank you!

And speaking of stories, I want to leave you with a quick story about optimism:

A family had twin boys whose only resemblance to each other was their looks. If one felt it was too hot, the other thought it was too cold. If one said the TV was too loud, the other claimed the volume needed to be turned up. Opposite in every way, one was an eternal optimist, the other a doom and gloom pessimist.

Just to see what would happen, on the twins’ birthday their father loaded the pessimist’s room with every imaginable toy and game. The optimist’s room he loaded with horse manure.

That night the father passed by the pessimist’s room and found him sitting amid his new gifts crying bitterly.

“Why are you crying?” the father asked.

“Because my friends will be jealous, I’ll have to read all these instructions before I can do anything with this stuff, I’ll constantly need batteries, and my toys will eventually get broken.” answered the pessimist twin.

Passing the optimist twin’s room, the father found him dancing for joy in the pile of manure. “What are you so happy about?” he asked.

To which his optimist twin replied, “There’s got to be a pony in here somewhere!”

As you know, we yearn, learn and earn exponentially more when we share our gifts with each other.  I want to hear from you, so leave a comment below to tell me how you try to stay optimistic OR if you are a reformed pessimist, how do you keep from relapsing.  If you loved this video, please subscribe to our youtube channel be sure to share it with your friends.  Also, don’t forget to head over to MEometry.com to sign up for exclusive email updates and to get insights that I only share with my most engaged peeps!

Remember that you and your gifts are extraordinary and exceptional.  Be You, Do You, and Love You because you know there is only one OF you!

See you next time on MEometryTV!

Authentically Yours,

Jason Goldberg

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About the Author

What does an award-winning serial entrepreneur, a network engineer, a former rapper (who opened for the Wu-Tang Clan), and a previously 332lb man have in common? They are all the same guy! “JG” has helped inspire and empower entrepreneurs and small business owners via executive, life and business coaching. He has also worked with the likes of NASA, Wyndham Vacation Ownership and Northrop Grumman.

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