Do you work with people who only see the negative aspects of life? How do you feel about this? To be successful in the workplace, optimism and positivity are particularly important; so we need to collaborate with people who can focus on the positives rather than honing in solely on the negatives.
I remember a lady I managed, who in every meeting would look at the negative points and begin each sentence with “but”. Every time she opened her mouth I would think, “what’s she going to complain about now?” She irritated me so much that I would avoid taking a break in the kitchen if I saw her there. I didn’t realise why this affected me until I read some Science……
Scheier and Carver (1992) conducted a study on “effects of optimism on psychological and physical well-being: theoretical overview and empirical update”, in which they presented research on the positive effects of optimism on psychological and physical well-being. Positive thinkers are more resilient to stress. Optimists tend to be happier and spend more time focussing on what can change and improve many aspects of their life. They have improved relationships and are positive social examples.
4 Reasons Why Optimistic Thinkers Cope Better with Stress in the Workplace:
- Positive mindset. Optimistic people have a more positive outlook on life and are more likely to view obstacles as opportunities rather than threats. This optimistic outlook enables them to approach stressful situations with a more constructive and solution-focused attitude, thereby enhancing their ability to cope.
- Resilience. Optimistic thinkers are often more resilient than pessimistic thinkers, meaning they are better able to bounce back from setbacks and deal with adversity. When faced with stressful situations, optimistic individuals may be more likely to see these as temporary and manageable, which can help them cope more effectively.
- Health benefits. Research has shown that optimistic thinkers may enjoy health benefits such as lower blood pressure, stronger immune function, and improved cardiovascular health. Being healthy provides them with the extra energy needed to cope. And these health benefits can help them better manage workplace stress.
- Social support. Optimistic individuals tend to have stronger social support networks than pessimistic individuals, which can provide them with emotional support and practical assistance when coping with stress. This social support can be especially advantageous in the workplace, where colleagues and co-workers can offer encouragement, advice, and assistance.
How to inspire optimism in your team
As a manager, you can use the following techniques to create and encourage optimism and positivity in your team:
Model positive behaviour. Leaders set the tone for their team, so it’s important to model the optimistic and positive mindset you want your team to adopt. Even when confronted with difficult obstacles, strive to remain calm, solution-focused, and optimistic.
Encourage positive thinking. Encourage your team members to adopt a positive mindset by focussing on solutions rather than problems, reframing negative experiences as opportunities for growth, and celebrating small victories.
Provide regular feedback. Regular feedback and recognition can help in boosting morale and foster a positive work environment. Be sure to acknowledge your team members’ accomplishments and provide them with constructive feedback to help them grow.
Foster a sense of community. Create a sense of community within your team by promoting collaboration, teamwork, and open communication. Encourage your team members to support one another, share ideas, and celebrate each other’s successes.
Offer opportunities for growth and development. Providing your team members with growth and development opportunities can help them feel valued and motivated. Provide opportunities for training, mentoring, and leadership to help your team members grow and develop their skills.
By implementing these strategies, you can create an environment of optimism and positivity that will assist your team in thriving and achieving success.
If developing optimistic and resilient teams is a priority for your organisation, then NOVA’s A-Star Management Programme can help you achieve this goal. You are welcome to book a Strategy Call with me if you would like to discuss these further or if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out or book your best time here.
You can also visit our website to know more about what the A-Star Management Programme can offer you and your team.