Characteristics of People With High Hope

Posted on July 22nd, 2013

Have you ever wondered why people with high-hope do better than people with low-hope? It turns out that there is a big difference between their coping skills, goal-setting strategies, motivation, and other characteristics. People with high-hope know how to tap into their motivational resources of confidence, self-efficacy, optimism, mastery learning, and intrinsic motivation.1 In doing so, they find the motivational support to overcome life’s challenges and obstacles.

How people with high-hope overcome their challenges

  1. Establish specific and short-term, rather than vague and long-term, goals.

  2. Focus on mastery (learning), rather than on performance and achievement goals.

  3. Rely on internal self-set goals, rather than on external, other-set goals.

  4. Engage goals with intrinsic, rather than extrinsic, motivation.

  5. Focus on what really matters and are less easily distracted by external obstacles or by task-irrelevant (distracting) thoughts and negative feelings.

  6. Generate multiple pathways and pursue other avenues when stumped rather than stick stubbornly with one approach.

  7. Have reservoirs of internally generated determination “I will get this done”; “Keep going!”.

  8. See more meaning in their lives as they reflect back on their lifelong progress in constructing and attaining valued goals.

Visual Summary

Click the image to enlarge


  1.  Cox, R. H. (2007). Sport psychology: concepts and applications (6th ed.). Boston: McGraw-Hill. 

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