According to a great deal of research, positive fantasies may lessen your chances of succeeding. In one experiment, the social psychologists Gabriele Oettingen and Doris Mayer asked 83 German students to rate the extent to which they “experienced positive thoughts, images, or fantasies on the subject of transition into work life, graduating from university, looking for and finding a job.” Two years later, they approached the same students and asked about their post-college job experiences. Those who harbored positive fantasies put in fewer job applications, received fewer job offers, and ultimately earned lower salaries. The same was true in other contexts, too. Students who fantasized were less likely to ask their romantic crushes on a date and more likely to struggle academically. Hip-surgery patients also recovered more slowly when they dwelled on positive fantasies of walking without pain…
Fantasies hamper progress [because] they dull the will to succeed: “Imagining a positive outcome conveys the sense that you’re approaching your goals, which takes the edge off the need to achieve.”
The negative side of positive thinking.
Pair with similar wisdom from The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can’t Stand Positive Thinking.
Six thinking hats.
The classic thinking framework from Edward De Bono. Though I’m yet to be in a meeting where everyone’s familiar enough with it that it wouldn’t sound a bit nuts to propose it. Ah well.
Oh, what’s that, dog? Your eggs/burrito/pizza/wings aren’t flavorful enough? Here, let me POUR A MAGIC FUCKING BOTTLE OF SAUCE THAT WILL SET YOUR ENTIRE FUCKING MOUTH ON FIRE.
I mean, holy Christ. Foods that somehow have natural properties that create heat and burning sensations inside you? That shit is crazy as fuck.