In the last post, Defining Stress and Crisis we discovered that there were many benefits of optimism that can relieve stress and help us get through crises. But you might be wondering: What if I’m a Pessimist? Does my outlook have any strengths?
The answer is: Yes! Pessimists with their outlook on life, use some strengths in their dealing with stresses and crises. Therefore, both optimism and pessimism can play important roles in our lives.
Jeremy Dean in his article Optimism vs. Pessimism observed in several studies that:
“Being optimistic allows people to pursue their goals in a positive way: to dream a bigger and better dream, which they can work their way towards. Optimists also seem to respond better to positive feedback, and part of being optimistic may be generating this feedback for themselves, i.e. thinking positive thoughts.”
“On the other hand, being pessimistic may help people reduce their natural anxiety and to perform better. Also, pessimists seem to respond better to negative feedback. They like to hear what the problems were, so they can correct them. Again, part of why pessimists generate these sorts of negative thoughts is that it helps them perform better.”
Mr. Dean concluded, “Optimism and pessimism aren’t just accidents; this evidence suggests they are two different, but effective, strategies of coping with a complex and unpredictable world.”
Both Optimists and Pessimists can be encouraged that they were created with wiring that helps then deal with the many stresses and crises they will face in their lives. So, relax and flow with the outlook on life that you take into your world each day.
Next: The Top Ten Stresses Families Manage
Dean, J. (n.d.). https://psychcentral.com/blog/pessimism-vs-optimism/.