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Don’t Think Too Positive

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Don’t Think Too Positive


5 min read
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Employing the “power of positive thinking” may actually keep you from achieving your goals.

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Can thinking positively really help you change your life for the better? Many psychologists believe so, but studies by psychology professor Gabriele Oettingen indicate that the “power of positive thinking” has its limits and may actually inhibit success. In this detailed analysis, Oettingen offers persuasive evidence revealing why good thoughts alone won’t help you accomplish your goals, and she examines what strategies will help you make progress. getAbstract recommends this article to those struggling to move forward on important life and career goals.


Popular psychologists often claim positive thinking will help you accomplish your goals, but empirical studies reveal the impact of positive thought is more complex than many self-help gurus suggest. Positive thinking can, indeed, give you a short-term mood boost. But, ironically, the same good feelings that fantasizing about positive outcomes generates can actually inhibit your ability to achieve goals in real life. The reason for this is that positive thinking can trick your brain into feeling like you have already succeeded, thereby sapping you of the motivation necessary to work hard enough to realize...

About the Author

Gabriele Oettingen is a psychology professor at New York University and the University of Hamburg.

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    J. L. 5 years ago
    Don't think too positive, list down your wishes as well as obstacle, then take actionable steps afterwards, that's all

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