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How to Teach a Child to Be Optimistic

How to Teach a Child to Be Optimistic

We hear the cliches all the time: Look on the bright side! Think positive! Don’t worry, be happy! And depending on our mood, we may respond, “Go jump in a lake”… or words to that effect.

But, surprise: All that positivity has a big payoff, in health, academic, social and life benefits for you and your child. A 30-year study by Martin Seligman, Ph.D., author of the great book The Optimistic Child, showed that optimism in children helps ward off depression and stress (Seligman’s study found a clear link between pessimism and depression), improves their performance in school and athletics and improves their physical health. Best of all, while optimism is an inborn trait in some, it can also be taught and encouraged, which is why I urge parents to start early in providing a positive role model and teaching their children optimistic approaches to life. Read more