You may have heard this very old story illustrating the difference between positive thinking and negative thinking.
This simple story provides a great example of how a single situation can be viewed in two very different ways – negatively or positively. This could be explained in terms of seeing a situation’s problems and disadvantages, instead of its opportunities and benefits. When telling this story its impact is increased by using exactly the same form of words (i.e. “nobody wears shoes”) in each salesman’s report, which emphasises how two very different interpretations are made of exactly the same situation.