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Optimism

Dispositional optimism is a personality construct that reflects individual differences in generalized expectations about future outcomes. Unlike their pessimistic counterparts, optimists tend to approach the world expecting positive, as opposed to negative, outcomes to occur in their future. This definition makes dispositional optimism different from other, related concepts that address outcome expectancies of specific, situational transactions and behaviors, or that infer optimism through an individual’s interpretation of negative life events. Most research examines dispositional optimism by administering the Life Orientation Test–Revised, which assesses a person’s generalized optimistic and pessimistic outcome expectancies. Much of this work has treated dispositional optimism as a continuous, bipolar construct, ranging from high levels of pessimism to high levels of optimism. Other research, however, has examined optimistic and pessimistic outcome expectancies ...

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