Optimism might help you think more clearly

Chronic pain is well-known as a negative, depressing experience. People find it more difficult to think straight, make decisions, concentrate, solve problems.

What if I told you that there’s a possibility that by thinking optimistically, taking some time to dream a little, you might be think more clearly and regain some of your brain power?

No, do NOT reach for the “happy pills”, this one’s something you can try for yourself.

For the formal instructions on how to do this, click here.
This link will take you to the Uncomfortable Optimist.

Briefly, here’s the deal:

For 20 minutes every day, for FOUR days, “Think about yourself in the future. Imagine that everything has gone as well as it possibly could. Think of this as the realization of all your life dreams. Now, write about what you imagined.”

Now if you’re not a writer, why not try using your phone or computer and recording your thoughts instead?

Now, the author of The Uncomfortable Optimist admits that this feels a bit cheesy. A bit Pollyanna. Maybe even contrived and silly.

I think it’s worth a go – it’s free, has no calories and might make a difference.

Plan WHEN you’re going to do it – what time of day, where will you be sitting, what will you have just done before you sit down to do it, and what will you do afterwards?

Think about what might get in the way of doing it over the next four days – and plan to get around those obstacles.

This excerpt from The Uncomfortable Optimist sits well with me: “Optimism is a lens through which one views the world.  The negative components are still there, but they aren’t the focus and they certainly aren’t the whole picture.  An optimist has created a habit of searching the world for good.  When looking back on the past, considering the present, or envisioning the future, the optimist’s mind has developed a natural tendency to emphasize those elements that have brought joy, happiness, and well-being.” (go here for more)

If you try this, drop me a line and let me know how it’s gone for you – I’d love to hear!

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4 thoughts on “Optimism might help you think more clearly

    • It’s absolutely my pleasure! I’ve shared your site with the “4OT” suite of Facebook groups as well. These are groups established for occupational therapists from around the world who discuss common topics. The group I administer is Pain4OT and I think what you’ve created is very relevant to the work we do with people who have chronic pain. Thanks so much!

  1. I love this idea! I can’t wait to start using it. What we imagine vividly and in detail can become reality. What a terrific way to step outside one’s current situation of pain and limitation to imagine a brighter future!

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