Understanding Hope, Optimism and Positivist

 By:  Nilesh Smart

Date:  09-24-2019

2 Loves

Hope, optimism and positivity are all important ideas that have the ability to make our lives better. However, they are not equivalent concepts; it's important to be clear about the differences between them, and when to use them. If we do so we are likely to be able to use them with greater success. So what are the differences between hope, optimism and positivity?

Hope – powering our future

Firstly, hope is an expression of our wishes that things will turn out well. It is an expression of our desire for a better future for ourselves and others. It injects us with a reason to keep trying and persevering, it and has a strong motivational impact on us.

Hope doesn't directly reflect what we think the outcome will be but rather reflects what we want the outcome to be. Hope probably reflects the default position for most people in most situations.

Optimism – injecting a positive bias

Secondly, optimism reflects a tendency to look at things in a positive way and reflects an increased expectation that things will, most of the time, go well. It goes beyond hope in that it injects positive bias into our ideas about the future. It too has a motivational impact but it is a biased position tilted towards an expectation of good outcomes.

Like all biases, this can distort the signals that our environment is telling us and cause us to focus on what we would prefer to happen rather than on what is likely to happen. Optimism is an appropriate attitude in many situations when we don't dismiss the possibility of negative outcomes and can cope when they happen.


Paul Addy a comment

Love Reply 0 February 16 2020 3:42 pm