“Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.” ~ Helen Keller
More often than not, we are guilty of allowing negative thoughts–pessimism–to creep into our minds and essentially squash opportunities that come our way. Never underestimate the power of optimism. Positive thinking plays a huge role in one’s personal growth and development. Optimism allows us to see the positive aspects of situations which ultimately leads to higher personal achievements. Instilling optimistic beliefs in ourselves make us more confident at tackling any situation, big or small. Optimism fuels our success in learning and achieving, be it in the classroom, at work, or in our daily life.
A study performed by Dr. Kai Kasper, from Germany’s University of Cologne, reveals that people who cleaned their hands after attempting an impossible task were more confident that they would do better at completing the same task the next time around. The same study also reveals that, although the clean hands test group felt more optimistic at completing the task the next time around, they weren’t more likely to successfully complete it. Although the outcome remained the same prior to and after cleaning, washing hands after encountering a negative result proved to be a confidence builder. Either way you look at it, hand washing is physically and emotionally cleansing. And washing your hands immediately after making a difficult decision will help you feel more confident, optimistic, and comfortable with the decision you made.
The next time you need to feel more optimistic or confident in your day-to-day decisions, steal a moment for yourself and try doing these seven simple steps:
- stand tall, hands on hips, with your feet planted firmly on the ground
- close your eyes and clear your mind of all thoughts
- take a deep, slow breath in through your nose
- feel your belly expand as it fills with the inhale of air
- then slowly exhale, releasing the air through your mouth
- feel your belly flatten and your body relax
- open your eyes and smile
These seven simple steps may be repeated throughout your day, as often as you like. On those days when you find yourself faced with an unexpected challenge that requires an extra boost of confidence, try washing your hands.