Problem solving skills are fundamental to being a successful technologist. Employers and industry research support the notion that skilled problem solvers are in high-demand.
It might not be intuitive to think that a positive mindset is associated with being a better problem solver – but that is the truth.
There is a growing body of research to suggest that happiness at work and maintaining a positive outlook, are more important for your career (as well as your general well-being) than you might have imagined.
Clinical psychologists there have discovered that positivity opens the brain up so that you see more possibilities than when you feel negative. When you experience happiness or joy, your brain is receptive to a broader range of options.
Great, but what does that have to do with you or your career? Well think about it for a minute.
Positive Thinking Builds Skills
The happier you feel, the more inclined you are to open yourself up to new options, opportunities, and experiences. Therefore the more likely you are to learn and acquire new skills as well as competencies.
Think of the happy kid in the school patio – the one who plays, interacts, runs around with a ball. That kid is building physical resistance, sports aptitudes, and social capabilities. And the same can be applied to you in your workplace.
Putting it simply, when you are happy you are receptive to learning. Now think about how that might play out in a work situation or in terms of your professional development.
Tying Positivity to Being a Successful Techie
What are the likely dividends when it comes to exploring and learning – not to mention, seeing greater possibilities, and solutions to problems.
Does that sound familiar? It should.
Enhanced problem-solving capabilities and taking an innovative approach to finding solutions are key skills in any field that leverages technology, whatever your role, whatever your organization.
In the digitization age, techies will be called upon to deliver solutions to problems that do not even exist yet in our imaginations. Put yourself ahead of the competition by being the best problem solver you possibly can by approaching problems with a positive mindset.
Innovative problem-solving and out-of-the-box thinking are the highly-prized attributes that drive careers and businesses across the sector.
Sounds good, right? Well, the benefits of thinking positively do not stop there.
Positive Mindset has Health Benefits
It is well documented that positive thinking is a major stress buster too.
Research universally indicates that people with a positive outlook are less likely to suffer depression, anxiety, and even certain illnesses – cardio-vascular illness being high on the list. Not only that, the glass-half-full brigade also have greater coping capacities and mechanisms for dealing with stress. And that is an enormous benefit right there.
Reducing stress empowers you to be much more functional at work. It means that you are better equipped to handle the kinds of high-pressure responsibilities that often come with climbing the ladder in your career. Knowing how to reduce stress helps you to clear your mind, see the possibilities, and – you got it – solve problems.
Positive Loop of Positive Thinking
The positive loop of positive thinking is referred to as the broaden and build theory, because positive emotions broaden your sense of possibilities and open your mind, which in turn allows you to build new skills and resources that can provide value in other areas of your life.
So the next question, how do you make yourself think positively?
Learn how to be More Positive
Well, why not spend some time thinking about what makes you happy and relaxed?
It might be sport, it might be music. It might be travelling to new places or spending time with people you love.
Beyond that, there are three specific things you could try:
Deep breathing and some form of meditation on a regular basis have been seen to boost positive emotions and relaxation. Why not start your day with a few minutes dedicated to relaxing your mind. Find out if there’s a meditation center near you or look online for a guide.
You might also want to try writing. Engaging your imagination and creativity to write about positive things – things that make you feel good.
Time for Play
And do not forget about the power of play. So much of our lives are devoted to work and other responsibilities – why not ensure that you have time scheduled for fun every week?
Take some time to figure out what it is that makes you feel happy and stay in a positive loop. Prioritize these activities as part of your routine. The benefits will go way beyond just making you smile.
To be a competing force in the workplace, equip yourself with the skills employers are searching for and are known to be stepping stones to success. Focus on building your technical skills but be sure to have a strong set of non-technical career skills as well.