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Philip E. Humbert, PhD

Author - Speaker

Personal Coach


Chapter 5:

Golden Secret #4: Undefeated Optimism!

This week, a friend sent me the following quote: "Think positive – how else are you going to get there?"

For the past few weeks, we’ve been talking about the habits and skills that create success, and nothing is more vital than the habit of optimism. Successful people expect to win, they expect favorable outcomes, they imagine the results they want IN ADVANCE, and they fully expect reality to exceed their wildest dreams.

Success is always based on optimism. Success ALWAYS requires an expectation of victory, a faith that the best is yet to be, and a belief that every obstacle will be over-come.

In the long run, nothing is attempted by those who expect defeat. No one makes a serious effort to win a race they expect to lose. Intelligent people do not invest in businesses they expect to fail, and no one commits to a relationship with someone they think will betray them.

Action, investments, risk and rewards, all belong to the optimists.

Pessimists often give the appearance of taking action. They have jobs, and own businesses. They start new careers and they marry, have children, pay taxes and participate in their communities. But, they rarely achieve total or large scale success, because at some level, they hold back. They pause, they calculate, and they "keep something in reserve for a rainy day."

Because they are always "holding back", the success they experience is usually short-lived, and represents only a small portion of what might have been. Having been cautious at the start, the rewards at the end are diminished.

True success, on a large scale, belongs to the optimists! It belongs to the courageous few who "go for it", who anticipate victory and dare to risk it all in the quest for glory! Instead of risk, optimists see opportunity. Instead of the chance of failure, they see the potential for victory.

Optimists do take more risks in life. And, things don’t always work out as they hoped. But even when they "fail", they see only a "learning opportunity", a "great lesson", or a "temporary setback." Where the pessimist sees failure, optimists see a chance to try a new way, to rebuild, start over, or get a fresh start.

The fourth essential trait of highly successful people is unbridled, unreasonable and undefeated optimism! Without optimism, humans simply do not attempt great things.

And, let’s add one more piece: optimism is a habit.

While it may be true that some children are born with a stronger sense of optimism than others, both optimism and pessimism are learned habits.

It takes no more effort to expect the best, than to fear the worst. In fact, I would argue that imagining wonderful success takes far LESS effort than worrying about every possible failure, mistake, embarrassment and setback. In my experience, worry and fear take tremendous energy!

On the other hand, hope, anticipation, eagerness and optimism create energy! They are fun! These thoughts and emotions pull life forward – and they are learned habits.

In the morning, get up and smile! Watch the sunrise, and note the miracle that it happened again, and right on time! Give thanks for life! Compliment the people you love, hug them, and set out to do something glorious with every wonderful day. Life is short – don’t waste a moment in worry, despair or pessimism.

Highly successful people have no time for pessimism or self-pity. They are too busy creating a better, brighter future, one they expect to enjoy to the fullest. They expect wonderful things of life, and they usually get what they expect.



Quotes of the Week:

 "Whether you think you can or think you can't, you're right."
                                              – Henry Ford

"Better to do something imperfectly than to do nothing flawlessly."
                                              – Robert Schuller

"It’s hard to wring my hands when I am busy rolling up my sleeves."
                                              – Linda Geraci

"Consult not your fears but your hopes and your dreams. Think not
about your frustrations, but about your unfulfilled potential. Concern
yourself not with what you tried and failed in, but with what it is still
possible for you to do."
                                            – Pope John XXIII

"Quality questions create a quality life. Successful people ask
better questions, and as a result, they get better answers."
                                           – Anthony Robbins

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Copyright 1999 by Philip E. Humbert. All Rights Reserved. May be freely copied and distributed as long as you include  the following information:  "The author is Philip E. Humbert, PhD.  His Internet site has many articles like this one, free reports, and a free motivational screensaver!  Visit him at:

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