VIDEO: Thinking Positively of Others

What’s the secret to a long-term relationship?

“Overlooking the negative and focusing on the positive,” says Helen Fisher, a best-selling author on relationships and a fellow at the Kinsey Institute.

Speaking on “The Diane Rehm Show,” Fisher says that brain scans of couples averaging 20 years revealed the parts of the brain that were active were those linked to empathy, self-control, and an ability to overlook negative, that is, “positive illusions.”

Maintaining “positive illusions” is an outlook that leaders can employ.

Leaders should look on bright side as a means of giving people hope. By nature such hope is rooted in a leader’s faith in his or her followers. It is an affirmation therefore of people for whom the leader is responsible.

None of us is perfect and everyone will, from time to time, do stupid things. Better then to assume the better nature of an individual who reports to you.

When a leader finds something negative, and which threatens organizational harmony, it is time to become involved. Dissent over issues is a positive; it encourages freedom of thought. Dissension over people that undermines the effectiveness of a leader cannot be tolerated.

A leader who can put aside petty slights in order to achieve intended goals is worthy of respect and followership.

First posted on on 9/01/2107