Always look on the bright side of life; do-doot! do-doot-do-doot-do-doot! (From Monty Python’s “Life of Brian”).
Espousers of the Cheerful attribute are amongst the most optimistic, open and tolerant people you could ever meet. To some, they will appear as models of all that’s good in people. To others – to most - they will appear as idealistic dreamers with no sense of the harsh reality of human nature.
Their innate optimism gives them a sense that, despite life’s ups and downs, everything will sort itself out for the best – and they expect to share in that good outcome. They have no great fears of what the future holds for them. This may seem a bit strange, given that more than over 40% of them are aged over 55. Surely they must see that they are coming either to the end of their careers or, more seriously, of their lives! They’re “over the hill”. What is there to be so cheerful about?
This conundrum is answered when you know that nearly half of them are Pioneers. These are people who have learned from their life experience – the good times and the bad times. Most of them were not always so optimistic and laid back. They will generally have been subject to the same ebb and flow of good and bad fortune as the rest of the population but they have learned to draw strength from the bad times and encouragement from the good. So what is there to fear from the future?
For the non-Pioneers, there’s a sense that, given relative safety and security, there’s little to be said apart from “live/get through each day as it comes”.
Those Cheerful espousers aged between 22 and 44 (prime working age) look to their age peers as if they are Pioneers. Indeed, just under half of them are. Let’s just be clear about that – they look a bit odd to the majority of their age group. They don’t seem to be as “driven” as their fellows, except perhaps in a hedonistic sense, and they do not seem to be at all haunted by the spectre of failure or lack of success.
Cheerful espousers don’t tend to sweat the “small stuff” – death, taxes and that sort of thing that’s going to happen anyway; nor things like politics and scandals that might inflame passions for a week only to be replaced in the news by the next “big story”.
Forgiveness is part of their nature. They always try to allow for a fresh start when there’s conflict. While they are subject to the normal human momentary flare-up of anger, vengeance is not really in their nature. They’d rather forgive and forget. Life’s too short to spend trying to “best” someone for some slight – real or imagined.
Significantly different from the vast majority of people around them is the degree of their openness to, indeed, embracing of others who are different than themselves. They sometimes will go as far as to declare that, by choice, they would prefer to live amongst people of different social backgrounds, race, colour, religion, etc.
So, paragons or deluded fools? The answer to that one is up to you and your own outlook on life.
1) Over-indexed: Over 55.
2) Under-indexed: 22-44.
Cheerful espousers also espouse other Attributes. The top six most highly correlated Attributes of Cheerful espousers are, in order of the strength of relationship:
In total those who espouse Cheerful also over-index significantly on 41 other Attributes.
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