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Optimism - making the most of a nicer view!

RocheMartin defines Emotional Intelligence by a set of 10 competencies and this is one in a series of blogs covering each one: Why develop Optimism, what is it exactly and how can you develop it?

Why develop Optimism?

…because...compared to pessimists...

Optimists have a nicer view, which leads to an easier more enjoyable time and more successful outcomes across all areas of life!

Why?...well, because of the way our minds work, we get what we focus on, and...

Optimists are focused on the positive
  • Being focused on the good stuff, they tend to look for, be alert to, and then act on opportunities, expecting the best outcome.

  • At least some of their actions are likely to pay off, which reinforces their positive view.

  • And being focused on the positive things, they are likely to sweep aside the things that didn’t work out.

Pessimists are focused on the negative
  • Being focused on the negative, they may not see, or they may discount opportunities because they expect the worst.

  • They are less likely to take committed action (why bother when it’s not going to work).

  • This leaves them with fewer opportunities for success which reinforces and fuels their negative view of the world.

Both types perceive what they already believe, which impacts how they behave and the results they get. They end up getting what they were focused on.

And you don't have to dig very deep into any work on positive psychology to discover that optimists (compared to pessimists)

  • are happier, healthier and live longer,

  • are better protected against depression,

  • are nice to be around as they create energy and positivity that is picked up by others

  • are more likely to succeed, as...

Your ability to succeed isn't dependent on how far or how often you fall, it's about how well and how quickly you bounce back!
And you need optimism for that!

What is Optimism exactly?

Optimism is seeing the positive and finding the opportunity in every experience...which allows you to bounce back from the ones that haven't gone the way you wanted or expected!

As with all the RocheMartin emotional intelligence competencies, Optimism can be broken down into 3 components, which help to pinpoint areas of strength and areas for development.

The 3 components of Optimism are

Opportunity sensing

Always on the lookout for opportunities that can move you forward to your vision or that are in line with what is important to you.

Positive mood

Able to maintain a focus on the positive that creates and sustains a good mood and creates energy.


The ability to bounce back quickly, fuelled by a belief that every experience is an opportunity to learn. Even the ones that don't go to plan or turn out as you hoped.

This allows you to maintain Self-Control, another emotional intelligence competency: whatever's happened, you can maintain focus on the task at hand rather than get swept away by any negative emotions like fear or disappointment.

How can you develop Optimism?

Coaching is by far the most efficient, effective, engaging, empowering and enjoyable way to build any of the Emotional Intelligence competencies.

Helping you to develop, refine and embed your own personalised strategies for each competency.

And this blog contains some ideas for you to experiment with on your own that have worked for me and my clients.

If you’re interested in understanding your level of emotional intelligence using one of the RocheMartin assessments or would like to explore coaching for developing components of it like Optimism, you can book a free call here.

And if you'd like to try out my monthly emails that provide a roundup of my blogs as well as other insights, you can sign up here.


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