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The Positivity I.Q. Measurement

"You can't manage what you can't measure". Peter Drucker     

"If you can't measure it, you can't improve it." Edward Demming


If I knew what I was thinking, I might be able to manage my self-talk.


My background is primarily in quantitative research. But I've always recognized there is a lot to learn from qualitative concepts and that there are many things we can't measure but still might be real and important.


Still, I could fully accept the advice to be "more positive" and take it on faith without some way to understand or know if I was becoming more positive.


Thus, the Positivity I.Q. is a simple measurement technique based on my experience with thousands of studies and tens of millions of interviews. I combined the principles of general IQ, multiple types of personalities, positive psychology, and standard statistics.


Positivity I.Q. is the first attempt to quantify Positivity; I've used the same universal probability distribution and I.Q. distribution to define being positive "most of the time."


Even if we can't obtain a perfect measure, creating a starting point to understand Positivity could be valuable and a platform for future improvement.


Yet, I don't believe the general advice just  to be "more positive will meet the threshold to support the beliefs and confidence in your plans. If your thoughts and self-talk are positive only 5% of the time and negative 95% of the time, increasing positive thinking to 20% is still not enough to keep you going through fear, uncertainty and challenges.


The real goal for effective Positivity is to be positive "most of the time."

And "most" is already established and recognized in our statistical laws.


Improve your position in the natural order of probability.

The normal distribution curve shows that in the universe of all possibilities, most activity occurs in the middle, and higher or lower levels of the measured activity fall away to the extremes.


If the usual advice is to have positive thoughts "most of the time." Most of the time is 68%.

I've applied the same concept to success patterns. I have to reach a point where my confidence and persistence enable me to keep working toward my goals.


We are experts at creating and believing negative thoughts.

But we usually have trouble creating, believing, and sustaining positive thoughts. The goal of practical Positivity is to learn to manage the positive, negative, and uncertainty/doubt so that the negatives do not overwhelm your positive aspirations and efforts.


Being average is good!

The goal for the individual or the organization is to have at least an average probability of success. Increase your Positivity, and your will  likely also increase motivation, persistence, and confidence to match your goals.

You can't change the nature of the universal statistical curve. But you can improve your Positivity IQ  to be among the most successful with a higher probability of success.


More good news!

You don't have to be positive 100% of the time, and a modest level of negativity and doubt is inevitable and necessary. Humans have a natural negativity bias, which is our DNA-based survival mechanism. Humans do need to exercise caution, assess risks, and change plans as necessary because that is the basis for surviving known and unknown threats.

But excessive negativity, fear, and uncertainty can stop every positive plan before it gets going. In our modern lives, negativity is  the harmful self-talk and the stories we tell ourselves about our confidence in our ambitions, abilities, and expectations.


It's time to update ancient wisdom and simplify the overly complex success and Positivity ideas. The Modern Positivity Formula is a simple plan to help manage the relationship between positive, negative, and uncertain thoughts and beliefs to reach the portal to the success zone.  


It's very simple and common sense — a sustained level of Positivity, focus, persistence, and resilience increase your probability of success.


"You've Always Had the Power, My Dear; You Just Had to Learn It for Yourself."

Glinda from The Wizard of Oz to Dorothy. The answer was always right there, within Dorothy's capabilities, if she looked and believed.

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