The motivational benefits of specific versus general optimism

This is a member only resource

Become a Member » Log In »
The motivational benefits of specific versus general optimism

This study addresses the question whether a specific work-related form of optimistic thinking has motivational consequences in terms of work engagement above and beyond general optimism over time. A specific form of optimistic thinking is focus on opportunities. Focus on opportunities is a future-oriented belief that describes how many plans goals and possibilities people expect to have in their future at work. Based on a cross-lagged panel design with a two-year time lag and data from a sample of 124 German business owners results of structural equation modeling showed that focus on opportunities positively predicted changes in work engagement over time even when controlling for general optimism. This finding supports propositions of social cognition and self-regulation theories that emphasize the importance of a specific form of optimism that has motivating potential by referring to future work goals and opportunities.

The Journal of Positive Psychology , 2013 Vol. 8, No. 5, 425 – 434

Become a Member

The IOC is a global community of coaches.


Contact Us

  • Institute of Coaching
  • McLean Hospital
  • 115 Mill Street, Mail Stop 314
  • Belmont, MA 02478
  • Phone: 617-767-2670