Learned Optimism Test
(adapted from Dr. Martin Seligman's book, "Learned Optimism")

The Instructions:

There are forty-eight (48) questions in this evaluation test. Take as much time as you need to answer each of the questions. On average, this test takes about fifteen minutes. There are no right or wrong answers. Do NOT read the analysis in "Learned Optimism" until after you have completed this test.

Read the description of each situation and vividly imagine it happening to you. You have probably not experienced some of the situations, but that should not matter. Perhaps neither response will fit; bout go ahead and choose the cause likelier to apply to you.

You may not like the way some of the responses sound, but don't choose what you think you should say or what would sound right right to other people; choose the response you'd be likelier to have.

The Questions:

1.  The project you are in charge of is a great success.
 I kept a close watch over everyone's work.
 Everyone devoted a lot of time and energy to it.

2.  You and your spouse (boyfriend/girlfriend) make up after a fight.
 I forgave him/her.
 I'm usually forgiving.

3.  You get lost driving to a friend's house.
 I missed my turn.
 My friend gave me bad directions.

4.  Your spouse (boyfriend/girlfriend) suprises you with a gift.
 He/she just got a raise at work.
 I took him/her out to a special dinner the night before.

5.  You forget your spouse's (boyfriend's/girlfriend's) birthday.
 I'm not good at remembering birthdays.
 I was preoccupied with other things.

6.  You get a flower from a secret admirer.
 I am attractive to him/her.
 I am a popular person.

7.  You run for a community office position and win.
 I devote a lot of time and energy to campaigning.
 I work very hard at everything I do.

8.  You miss an important engagement.
 Sometimes my memory fails me.
 I sometime forget to check my appointment book.

9.  You run for a community office position and you lose.
 I didn't campaign hard enough.
 The person who won knew more people.

10.  You host a successful dinner.
 I was particularly charming that night.
 I am a good host.

11.  You stop a crime by calling the police.
 A strange noise caught my attention.
 I was alert that day.

12.  You were extremely healthy all year.
 Few people around me were sick, so I wasn't exposed.
 I made sure I ate well and got enough rest.

13.  You owe the library ten dollars for an overdue book.
 When I am really involved in what i am reading, I often forget when it is due.
 I was so involved in writing the report that I forgot to return the book.

14.  Your stocks make you a lot of money.
 My broker decided to take on something new.
 My broker is a top-notch investor.

15.  You win an athletic contest.
 I was feeling unbeatable.
 I train hard.

16.  You fail an important examination.
 I wasn't as smart as the other people taking the exam.
 I didn't prepare for it well.

17.  You prepared a special meal for a friend and he/she barely touched the food.
 I wasn't a good cook.
 I made the meal in a rush.

18.  You lose a sporting event for which you have been training for a long time.
 I'm not very athletic.
 I'm not good at that sport.

19.  Your car runs out of gas on a dark street late at night.
 I didn't check to see how much gas was in the tank.
 The gas gauge was broken.

20.  You lose your temper with a friend.
 He/she is always nagging me.
 He/she was in a hostile mood.

21.  You are penalized for not returning your income-tax form on time.
 I always put off doing my taxes.
 I was lazy about getting my taxes done year.

22.  You ask a person out on a date and he/she say no.
 I was a wreck that day.
 I got tongue-tied when I asked him/her on the date.

23.  A game-show host picks you out of the audience to participate in the show.
 I was sitting in the right seat.
 I looked the most enthusiastic.

24.  You are frequently asked to dance at a party.
 I am outgoing at parties.
 I was in perfect form that night.

25.  You buy your spouse (boyfriend/girlfriend) a gift and he/she doesn't like it.
 I don't put enough thought into things like that.
 He/she has very picky tastes.

26.  You do exceptionally well in a job interview.
 I felt extremely confident during the interview.
 I interview well.

27.  You tell a joke and everyone laughs.
 The joke was funny.
 My timing was perfect.

28.  Your boss gives you too little time in which to finish a project, but you get it finished anyway.
 I am good at my job.
 I am an efficient person.

29.  You've been feeling run-down lately.
 I never get a chance to relax.
 I was exceptionally busy this week.

30.  You ask someone to dance and he/she says no.
 I am not a good enough dancer.
 He/she doesn't like to dance.

31.  You save a person from choking to death.
 I know a technique to stop someone from choking.
 I know what to do in crisis situations.

32.  Your romantic partner wants to cool things off for a while.
 I'm too self-centered.
 I don't spend enough time with him/her.

33.  A friend says something that hurts your feelings.
 She always blurts things out without thinking of others.
 My friend was in a bad mood and took it out on me.

34.  Your employer comes to you for advice.
 I am an expert in the area about which I was asked.
 I am good at giving useful advice.

35.  A friend thanks you helping him/her get through a bad time.
 I enjoy helping him/her through tough times.
 I care about people.

36.  You have a wonderful time at a party.
 Everyone was friendly.
 I was friendly.

37.  Your doctor tells you that you are in good physical shape.
 I make sure I exercise frequently.
 I am very health conscious.

38.  Your spouse (boyfriend/girlfriend) takes you away for a romantic weekend.
 He/she needed to get away for a few days.
 He/she likes to explore new areas.

39.  Your doctor tells you that you eat too much sugar.
 I don't pay much attention to my diet.
 You can't avoid sugar, it's in everything.

40.  You are asked to head an important project.
 I just successfully completed a similar project.
 I am a good supervisor.

41.  You and your spouse (boyfriend/girlfriend) have been fighting a great deal.
 I have been feeling crankyand pressured lately.
 He/she has been hostile lately.

42.  You fall down a great deal while skiing.
 Skiing is difficult.
 The trails were icy.

43.  You win a prestigious award.
 I solved an important problem.
 I was the best employee.

44.  Your stocks are at an all-time low.
 I didn't know much about the business climate at the time.
 I made a poor choice of stocks.

45.  You win the lottery.
 It was pure chance.
 I picked the right numbers.

46.  You gain weight over the holidays and you can't lose it.
 Diets don't work in the long run.
 The diet I tried didn't work.

47.  You are in the hospital and few people come to visit.
 I'm irritable when I am sick.
 My friends are negligent about things like that.

48.  They won't honor your credit card at a store.
 I sometimes overestimate how much money I have.
 I sometimes forget to pay my credit-card bill.

The Analysis:
The following analysis uses the rules spelled out in "Learned Optimism" by Martin E.P. Seligman, PhD. The score is listed after each category along with the Seligman assessment of your score.

Just press the Calculate button at the bottom of the screen for the results. If a result comes up with "MISSING ANSWERS", it means that you did not answer one or more questions in the test. Just scroll back through the test and find the questions you missed.

If nothing happens after you press Calculate, you might have JavaScript disabled on your browser. Check either your Options|Network or Edit|Preferences|Navigator|Languages in Netscape, or Options in Microsoft Explorer. You will have to reload the page for this to take effect.

Permanence Bad Score    
Permanence Good Score    
Pervasiveness Bad Score    
Pervasiveness Good Score    
Stuff of Hope    
Personalization Bad Score    
Personalization Good Score    
Total Bad Score    
Total Good Score    
Good minus Bad Score    


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