I also learned that being an optimist doesn't have to mean never having negative thoughts or just responding to the world with blind and foolish positivity. It seems it's all about the way you react to these thoughts and whether you let them consume you. Seligman's advice was to either distract yourself from negativity or dispute it. In other words, it seems you can argue yourself out of being a pessimist through logic. Well, that seems easy enough, right?
I'll admit that I'm most guilty of pessimism when it comes to my writing. Sometimes I'll sit down to write and think things like Well, this will never work. No one will ever want to read this. This is never going to get published. You get the point. Seligman used an example in the book about a woman who was dieting, ate a little junk food, began obsessing over the idea that she'd ruined her diet and then just gave up and ate a tub of ice cream. Okay, I'll admit that I would do something like this, too.
So today's challenge is this: not to banish all self-doubt or negative thoughts, but to dispute them. Every time I think something negative today, I'm going to make myself take a few seconds to argue myself out of it. Can I do it? Can you?