Why You Are Generally Optimistic or Pessimistic

How we think about why we succeed or fail is…characterized as our “attributional style.”

[Review: There are internal attributions like being talented and motivated. And there are external attributions like being lucky the circumstances turn out in your favor.]

Attributions of success and failure can also be stable or unstable. Being talented or motivated is a stable attribution; it is not likely to change tomorrow or next week. Getting lucky on the exam is inherently unstable. There are also some attributional factors that are local and others that are global.

Research by Martin Seligman and his colleagues demonstrated strong connections between attributional style [how we think about why we succeed or fail] and a variety of factors. Those who attributed success to internal, stable, global causes tended to be optimistic in their outlook. Those who attributed success to external, unstable, local causes tended to be pessimistic in their outlook.


Scientific Secrets for Raising Kids Who Thrive

P. Vishton


I have no greater joy than this, to hear of my children walking in the truth. ~ 3 John 4

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About Robert Coss

I was made in America by God. I hope you will see the quality of that workmanship.
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