The Most Robust Strategy To Practice Optimism

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In The How of Happiness, Dr. Sonja Lyubomirsky tells us:

Some optimists may be born that way, but scores of optimists are made with practice. All that is required to become an optimist is to have the goal and to practice it. The more you rehearse optimistic thoughts, the more ‘natural’ and ‘ingrained’ they will become. With time they will be part of you, and you will have made yourself into an altogether different person... Whether our optimism is big or little, many of us waver in our expectations of the future. Fortunately, numerous research-tested activities have been shown to boost positive thinking. The most robust strategy involves keeping a journal regularly for ten to twenty minutes per day, in which we write down our hopes and dreams for the future (e.g., ‘In ten years, I will be married and a home owner’), visualize them coming true, and describe how we might get there and what that would feel like. This exercise—even when engaged in as briefly as two minutes—makes people happier and even healthier.”

In a recent interview, Sonja stated she would perhaps upgrade from journaling to practicing WOOP (Wish, Outcome, Obstacle, Plan) as the most robust strategy for cultivating optimism.

In Positive Psychology: Resilience Skills, Dr. Karen Reivach tells us people high in optimism:

Remember: “All that is required to become an optimist is to have the goal and to practice it.”