Monday, July 28, 2008



Do what you can, where you are, with what you have. (Theodore Roosevelt)


Thomas Edison’s laboratory burned to the ground one day in 1914. Walking among the ashes the next morning, he said: “All our mistakes are burned up. Thank God we can start anew.”

For his book, “The Power of Optimism,” Dr. Alan Loy Mc Ginnis, a psychologist, read 1,000 biographies and analyzed the lives of hundreds of successful people. He concludes: “The road to a happy and successful life is paved with optimism.

Being a pessimist or an optimist is largely a matter of choice. We can change the way we feel.

According to Dr. Mc Ginnis, you can become an optimist by emulating the mental habits most successful people share:

Think of yourself as a problem solver. Optimists understand that setbacks are inevitable. They aren’t surprised if a problem occurs and always look for the good in bad situations. “A setback is simply a problem in need of a solution.”

Take action to control your destiny. Successful people realize that certain things in life are beyond their control. They focus on which of their actions can make a difference.

Condition your mind. Like athletes who visualize a certain move, or who paint a mental picture of victory, successful people prepare themselves for success with “creative daydreaming.”

Throughout his book, Dr. Mc Ginnis quotes successful people – from Winston Churchill to CEO’s and sales managers – many of whom suffered crushing defeats. All came roaring back after a failure.

Actually, optimists do not use the word “failure.” They call it a false start or, perhaps, a glitch – and keep going.

And that makes all the difference.


Jill said...

Great post, I think of myself as an optimist. I think mistakes happen because we need to learn something from them, and trials are given to us to make us stronger. I have been through a lot in the past few years, so I guess if I can still feel this way, maybe I'm doing something right

Lynn - the piggy bank painter said...

Aaaahhh, I like this post!