5th Analysis of the International Inspiration Index (I3)

The purpose of the I3 (The International Inspiration Index) is to get a feel for how people are feeling, what’s bothering them, and their outlook for the future. It started in late April, 2009 and is published every one to two months. This month, we have our first longer-term predictions as to where we’re going!

If you would like to take the ongoing I3 survey, go to www.Motivation2010.com.

October and November combined

The last month analyzed was September. So, the graph below will show what has happened over the last two months.

All Stats for Last Six Months (click to enlarge)

Understanding the Scores:

On questions #1 and #2, “five” is an excellent attitude and “one” is a horrible attitude, “three” would be average.

For question #3, “five” means greatly concerned, “one” means not at all concerned.

For question #4, “five” is extremely optimistic and “one” is extremely pessimistic.

Questions #1 #2: How’s your attitude – as well as those around you

The highest month for personal attitude remains July of 2009 with a 4.1o. The highest month for your perception of others’ attitudes remains August with a 3.60. One interesting trend is that the overall average for “My Attitude” is 3.70 with the first four months averaging 3.73 and the last four months averaging 3.68; basically staying flat during the entire eight-month period. However, the overall average for “Others Attitudes,” lower than “My Attitude” is 3.36 but the first four months it was 3.25 and the latter four months, it’s a 3.48; possibly showing that our perception of others is improving, but who knows?

Looking at the chart showing the trend lines of these two statistics, we can see a generally upward path and a convergence between “My Attitude” and “Others Attitude.”

Trends: MINE vs. OTHERS full survey period (click to enlarge)

Also one other thing to note is that, for the first time in all the time I’ve been asking these questions (and I’ve done this survey informally before I started the I3), “My Attitude” was lower in October than “Others Attitude.” Every other time I’ve asked this question, “My Attitude” has always outscored “Others Attitudes.” (October was also a horribly small sample size so it could be an aberration.)

As always, my standard disclaimer is that so far the samples are not very large (averaging 36 a month) and the survey is self-selecting so we don’t know how accurate it is.

Factors influencing the I3 during the last few months

Staring in August, I began making a note of major international and international events that could be influencing the collective attitude. Following are stories I considered to be significant:

October 2009:

  • Debate coming to an end on health care bill
  • McChrystal asking for 40K more troops in Afghanistan
  • Chicago losing Olympic bid to Rio
  • Obama winning peace prize
  • Daylight savings time ends
  • High death toll for US Military in Afghanistan
  • Huge terrorist bombing in Iraq

November 2009:

  • One year anniversary of Obama’s election
  • Swine flu vaccine goes widespread
  • Huge tuition increases at UC campuses
  • Unemployment hits 10.2%
  • Holidays in full swing
  • Fort Hood shooting
  • Thanksgiving
  • Senate & House pass bills for health care
  • Obama debates what to do in Afghanistan
  • Sarah Palin’s book is released
A few selected comments from survey-takers about their attitudes:

God has blessed me with a generally good disposition

I usually have an upbeat attitude. It’s the end of the year and I feel like I haven’t accomplished much. I also realized I need validation from others – and that’s not happening now.

I love the holidays — but sometimes I just allow myself to get too busy and lose focus on what I want to be important!

I need to take responsibility for my choices, right now I only do it sometimes.

Everything pisses me off, I seem to have lost all patience, where I used to be known for my patience.

Some ups, some downs. But overall my attitude is as good as I make up my mind for it to be.

I deal with some real “jackasses” so sometimes, it affects my mental well being. Plus I’ve had some very severe back problems and am in horrific chronic pain, so it too has affected my attitude.

And one person summed it all up as follows:

Too much bad ‘stuff’ is happening at once…

Some noteworthy comments from survey takers about others’ attitudes

I think people are starting to realize that in order to succeed, they need to rely on themselves, and in doing that, they have become more self sufficient and happier because of it.

Most people I am friends with have been struggling with financial woes. The friends with financial troubles have been very down. The friends without money troubles have been exactly the same. (A little predictable, I know)

And two opposing views:

Most people I know are in good spirits and I try not to talk to strangers

Holidays make people cranky!

Question Three: What concerns you?

Continuing the pattern that started late summer, Education continues to be the primary concern of the people who have taken the I3 for the last few months. What is also interesting is that “Public Health” has been rising lately, possibly due to all the news about Swine Flu and is actually tied with Education now.

The top three concerns at the end of November were:

  1. Education (3.7 end of November from 3.5 in October, down from from 3.9 in September – which was the start of the school year)
  2. Public Health (3.7 end of November from 3.1 in October and 3.8 in September)
  3. Economy (3.6 end of November from 3.4 in October and 3.7 in September)

The chart with the top four and their six-month trends is after the jump.

Here’s the chart showing the trends of the top four since the I3’s inception

Top 4 Concerns Trends (click to enlarge)

Overall, the top five things that concern us overall for the entire run of the I3 (i.e. highest averages) are:

  1. Economy (3.75, trending down from 3.83)
  2. Education (3.53 trending slightly up from 3.50)
  3. Environment (3.41 trending down from 3.50)
  4. Public Health (3.30 trending up from 3.27)
  5. Personal Health (entering at 3.09 and replacing Personal Job as #5)

The lowest rated remains Terrorism (2.53, trending slightly up from 2.50)

Comments from survey-takers on Question #3:

I’m facing some potential personal medical issues, which not only worry me for my own health, but because I learned a few weeks ago that I could be getting a promotion soon … which would mean a new pressure and some stress with some work friends.

Everyone in my family is healthy and doing reasonably well. My youngest son graduated college and is still looking for a job – that is a concern.

I am very happy with my family and “local” life, but very concerned with national and global issues such as the environment , health care, religious nationalism/fanaticism, etc.

My auntie is having major alcohol issues and alienating everyone, creating big drama and blaming a lot…. it is my most difficult issue

Concerned by the United Stated walking away from our founding fathers religious beliefs and our governments political correctness. Making sure the robbers have the same treatment as the working individual

Most media issues are really overrated and there’s not too much we can do about any of it anyway.

And the sanguine…

Of course, I’ve tuned out … so I’ve learned that ignorance really is bliss.

Question Four: What do you think about the future?

Finally, the big question, basically, “Where do you think we’re going?”

OK, I’ll admit it, this is really a shot in the dark as none of us has a crystal ball. That said, people continue to be more optimistic about the long term than they are about the short term.  Viewing the graph below, the blue line is where survey-takers presumed our collective attitude will be in December. The purple line is six months from now (April, 2010), the green line is November, 2010; red is November 2014, and Yellow is 2019.

Where are we Going? (click to enlarge)

One observation is that — with the exception of the five and ten year projections, which are trending pretty flat — overall attitude on the other three predictions is upwards, an optimistic sign. The following chart shows those trends.

(Expanded) Shorter Term Trending Predictions (click to enlarge)

Comments:

We are boiling the atmosphere off our planet (global warming), failing to educate the next generation that must deal with it, creating a two-class system of haves and have-nots (example, lack of universities and health care) and it is probably too late to reverse it. Have a nice day. 😦

That’s assuming our current government doesn’t give away the store, create one world government with the Copenhagen treaty, or rescind the constitution…

I hope and pray things will get better and we will be back to a world leader instead of a world user

My husband works in the banking industry so this whole economic trend has BEEN IN OUR professional FACES for quite a while. It has also had an enormous impact on our personal financial situation and future. We will survive, and it will get better, but it is definitely concerning…

I want to be optimistic.

Checking the accuracy of the predictions

This will be the first month of six month predictions and I’m very excited about it! However, let’s start with one month predictions; in other words, where do we think we’ll be in December? Are we optimistic or pessimistic? Will things be better or worse?

Accuracy History for One Month Predictions

Understanding the numbers

The first column is what the people taking the I3 predicted the mood of the country would be like in one month. For example, in April, respondents predicted that in May, the attitude of the country would be a 3.0. However, in May, when people took the survey in May, they rated their general attitude to be a 3.8. Therefore, the I3 had what I am calling an “Accuracy Rating” of 78.95% (3.00 divided by 3.80).

Overall, as we can see from the above, that the I3 is under-rating attitude by a little less than 20% because it’s 83.59% accurate (see the total average).

Looking toward the Future – one month prediction

In November, respondents said that they predict the mood in December will be a 3.2. (see chart at the very top of this post) If we divide 3.2 by 83.59%, we arrive at a 3.83 rating, meaning that the general mood of the country will be on an upswing.

Looking toward the Future – six month prediction

This is brand new but uses the same methodology as the one month prediction. We also have fewer numbers to deal with. Following is the chart, ironically appearing to be more accurate than the one month with a 93.06% accuracy rating.

Six Month Accuracy Predictions

In November (again from the chart at the top of the page), respondents predicted that six months from now, our collective attitude will be a 3.5, up from the 3.2 they’re predicting for next month. If we take 3.5 and divide it by the accuracy rating of 93.06%, we get 3.76 for May of 2010.

If you would like to take the ongoing I3 survey, go to www.Motivation2010.com.

If you would like to download the overview of October’s report as a pdf,  follow this link.
If you would like to download the overview of November’s report as a pdf, follow this link.

If you would like to see all postings regarding the I3, follow this link.

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~ by scottqmarcus on December 13, 2009.

2 Responses to “5th Analysis of the International Inspiration Index (I3)”

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