If I had to define my general outlook on life, I would say I’m a pragmatist. I tend to hope for the best while assuming the worst so that I can plan accordingly. The glass is neither half full nor half empty; however, I am interested in the contents and in whether I have to drink them or can choose something else. This is probably why I get annoyed at all the talk about the “clean slate” of a new year. I woke up on January 1 with the same challenges I was facing on December 31. It was, after all, just another day.
Still, I can’t help admiring the attitude of people like Clay Wygant, senior surveyor for WHPacific Inc. I’ve run into Clay at several different conferences focused on laser scanning, and he always exudes positive energy. Some might say there’s a good reason-after all, Clay has had a tremendous amount of success with the cutting-edge technology of mobile scanning, and any success these days is bound to make one cheerful. But is it the success that makes Clay optimistic, or is it his optimism that creates his success?
According to Dr. Jill Ammon-Wexler, pioneer brain researcher and international success coach, a person’s emotional intelligence, or EQ (which includes a heavy dose of optimism along with self-confidence, motivation, productivity and empathy) is more important than their brain power IQ and a more accurate predictor of business success. It’s basic psychology. Even if pessimists are often right, statistically speaking, optimists will likely go farther in life because they don’t have the self-imposed limitations.
I recently interviewed Clay for an upcoming article in POB, and he told me that his colleagues once gave him a bracelet with the inscription “relentlessly optimistic.” I like this phrase, because it indicates a determined choice to be optimistic rather than simply a genetic predisposition. I might be wired to be pragmatic or even pessimistic-but I can choose to face each situation with optimism.
So, I didn’t make New Year’s resolutions this year. I typically don’t, because it simply isn’t practical. But I do try to resolve each day to have a positive attitude and to make the best of each opportunity. Perhaps that’s all any of us can do.
P.S. Look for my article on Clay Wygant and WHPacific in POB’s February issue.