Making Positive Psychology Work Podcast

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Interview with Neil Garrett

Neil Garrett on Are You Wired For Optimism?

Today’s Guest

My guest today is Neil Garrett, a cognitive neuroscientist at the University College London. His research investigates the mechanisms by which individuals learn information about the world and the factors that influence learning processes.

Neil Garrett’s website: http://neilgarrett.org/

In this conversation, Neil shares a growing body of scientific evidence that points to the conclusion that optimism may be hardwired by evolution into the human brain.  He explores the positive and negative impacts of our optimism bias, how it impacts our motivation and willingness to take risks, and the impact it may have for how leaders communicate in workplaces.

You’ll Learn:

  • [02:13] – Neil shares that research suggests that our brains are wired for optimism. However, this can be influenced by factors such as depression, stress, and anxiety.
  • [03:21] – Neil talks about what is going on neurologically as our brain interprets good and bad information.
  • [05:10] – This filtering of information encourages motivation, but can lead to risk-taking.
  • [05:52] – Neil explores the role of genetics in this process.
  • [06:31] – Neil talks about how these findings can impact workplaces.
  • [08:15] – Neil discusses how leaders can use this information to deliver information.
  • [09:47] – Neil talks about the impact technology can have on harnessing our brain’s activity.
  • [10:57] – Neil shares some of his current research, which involves work with firefighters.
  • [13:34] – The Lightning Round with Neil Garrett

Your Resources:

Thanks For Listening!

Thanks so much for joining me again this week. If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the bottom of this post.

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And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on iTunes to get automatic updates. It’s free! Special thanks to Neil for joining me this week. Until next time, take care!

Until next time, take care!

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