“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” That was the famous proclamation of Thomas Edison. That attitude, it has been found, will help you live longer.
Cognitive scientists have found a positive feeling cannot just help us do critical tasks but is actually biologically good to the extent that it increases the lifespan. Our pleasure system literally eats up our positive attitude like it was delicious food, as it is pleasure that helps us live long. Like diet and exercise it’s good for us
Optimism helps us develop a life of meaning and a belief that we are in control of our own destiny. Interestingly enough scientists have also found that most people at the very deep level are optimistic and believe that they can in fact pick themselves up when they fall down. We are, it turns out, wired that way.
And while optimism aids the lifespan, it also helps ensure business success or success at almost anything. Those who are truly optimistic follow the Edison Credo, to keep one foot in front of the other and not worry about failures, concentrating on that future success.
A successful sales manager once told this journalist, after a dozen or so people had said no to his product, that meant he was closer to success. That attitude had produced a winning way, as he was the top sales manager in his region and someone who could motivate others.
Kurzweil is that scientist who offers reviews of these wonderful things that keeps us always one step of the curve. Today’s offering is a review of Rainy Brain, Sunny Brain: How to Retrain Your Brain to Overcome Pessimism and Achieve a More Positive Outlook by Elaine Fox. This book paints that radiant picture of what is possible with a positive mind and the science behind that.
So whether you are Edison or a poet that reminds us to laugh and the world laughs with you, which is an identifying characteristic of that positive attitude, a sunny smile will always get you further than the frown, according to the experts.
In a biography of Thomas Edison the author, Gerald Beal says, “Thomas Edison was more responsible than anyone else for creating the modern world – – – no one did more to shape the physical/cultural makeup of present day civilization.”
Accordingly, Edison was the most influential figure of this generation and beyond and is labeled as one of the heroes of the modern age. That optimism likely was his fuel and the example for the rest of us.