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Psychological CapitalDeveloping the Human Competitive Edge$
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Fred Luthans, Carolyn M. Youssef, and Bruce J. Avolio

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195187526

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195187526.001.0001

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PsyCap Optimism

PsyCap Optimism

Realistic and Flexible

Chapter:
(p.87) CHAPTER 4 PsyCap Optimism
Source:
Psychological Capital
Author(s):

Fred Luthans (Contributor Webpage)

Carolyn M. Youssef (Contributor Webpage)

Bruce J. Avolio

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195187526.003.0004

This chapter first defines PsyCap optimism by using Martin Seligman's explanatory or attribution style, i.e., optimists take credit for positive events in their lives and for negative events attribute to the external, temporary, and specific to the situation causes. After noting other conceptions of optimism based on emotional dimensions and future expectations, emphasis is given to the realistic and flexible qualifiers of PsyCap optimism. The remainder of the chapter then makes the case for the importance of optimism at the employee, organizational leader, and overall organizational levels. Specific attention is given to developing realistic optimism in today's workforce. The concluding sections recognize some of the potential pitfalls and point to future directions for research and practice.

Keywords:   attribution style, explanatory style, flexible optimism, optimism, optimism development, optimistic employees, optimistic leaders, optimistic organizations, PsyCap optimism, realistic optimism

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