Optimist people build their power upon their abstract thinking
Frances Milliken, one of the academics responsible for work on organisational silence, did a marvellous study comparing how those in power communicate differently from those who lack power. She found that, like the rich, the powerful are different from other people. Confronted by risky situations, they are more likely to expect positive outcomes. They're so optimistic at least in part because they have - or think they have - the power needed to overcome most adversity. That psychological distance between themselves and others means that they don't think as concretely as other people - they lack the material - and so inevitably they have to think in far more abstract terms. But what is frightening about Milliken's study is that the combination of power, optimism and abstract thinking makes powerful people more
certain. The more cut-off they are from others, the more confident they are that they are right.
Focus is saying no to 1,000 good ideas.
…I think everybody should get rich and famous, and do everything they ever dreamed of, so they can see that it’s not the answer…
No one was as rich as they were, precisely because they owned nothing and did not want more.
[About Angela Duckworth - American academic, psychologist - experiment]
Duckworth finds it useful to divide the mechanics of achievement into two separate dimensions: motivation and volition. Each one, she says, is necessary to achieve long-term goals, but neither is sufficient alone. Most of us are familiar with the experience of possessing motivation but lacking volition: You can be extremely motivated to lose weight, for example, but unless you have the volition— the willpower, the self-control— to put down the cherry Danish and pick up the free weights, you’re not going to succeed.
If a child is highly motivated, the self-control techniques and ...