The Optimism Skills Facilitator Guide is a collection of step-by-step instructions for teaching 18 personal skills activities (388 minutes) to groups of youth and adults.

Some people believe that life is wonderful. Others believe that life stinks. Optimism and pessimism are attitudes that are self-fulfilling. Those who think life is hard and unsatisfying will find that it is, and those who think life is wonderful and rewarding will find that it has much to offer. Martin Seligman, Ph.D., author of Learned Optimism, states that the difference between an optimist and a pessimist is how each regards success and failure. The optimist sees success as lasting, meaningful and a result of hard work. The pessimist sees success as temporary, not meaningful and happening by accident. The optimist sees failure as temporary, not meaningful and caused by a lack of hard work. The pessimist sees failure as permanent, personal and caused by others. Optimism is looking on the bright side, finding the silver lining, seeing a glass as being half full instead of half empty. It is looking to the future with hope and finding good aspects in the bad things that happen. Worrying over insignificant things will only cause us to miss life's happiness.

  1. Optimism vs. Pessimism
  2. Self-Fulfilling Prophecies
  3. Happy Attitude
  4. Happy or Sad
  5. Pollyanna
  6. Esteem Boosters and Putdowns
  7. Healing Wounds
  8. Exoneration
  9. Acid Eats Away
  10. A Winning Attitude
  11. Quit or Try Again
  12. Diet, Exercise and Rest
  13. You Can If You Think You Can
  14. Optimistic Personalities
  15. Having an Attitude
  16. Popularity
  17. Negative Perfection
  18. The Right Stuff


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