Think positive and be a winner!

‘When life hands you lemons, make lemonade ...’1 famously advised Norman Vincent Peale, a Reformed Church minister and founding father of the Positive Thinking movement. If you ever needed a demonstration of the power of positive thinking, then the way the ideology of ‘accentuating the positive’ has infiltrated every level of Western culture since the 1950s might well clinch the argument.

Of course the policy of always insisting on a glass half full has also had its detractors. Writer and journalist Barbara Ehrenreich is the latest champion in a valiant tradition of hardcore dissenters and her acerbic commentary Smile or Die is well worth a read. However, it is fair to say that such conscientious objectors ...

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