The Trap of Being a Pessimist

The Trap of Being a Pessimist

Water lilies, Lake Bled, Slovenia, Europe

Pessimism is a very common thinking pattern nowadays. It is accompanied by a well-known reasoning: ‘I choose pessimism, because I hate to be disappointed.’ Thus pessimism seems to be the safe way through life. But is it really? What if it escalates to depression? And even if it does not – do we really want to be miserable for 70 or even 100 years, simply in order to avoid disappointment?

I used to be a pessimist. The upper safety strategy was so deeply rooted in my ways of thinking that I was not even aware of it. In addition to that I had another belief: ‘If I expect the worst, I will prevent it from happening.’ This belief was almost a superstition. Both beliefs were nurturing my pessimistic view of life.

The outbursts of schizoaffective disorder made me hit the bottom and forced me to evaluate my beliefs. I would not even have needed to open any new age self help book. The western medicine approach called CBT (cognitive-behavioral therapy) was enough to encourage me to start thinking in a more optimistic way. For those who dislike new age – CBT is a simple common sense method, anyone can use, it is not just for mental health consumers. Having started with the CBT method I continued to dive into the ocean of optimism with the help of Phyllis Krystal Method. Surely there are numerous other ways of exploring various possibilities of changing our thinking patterns.

Last but not least, let us remember that philosophically speaking, the absolute truth is inaccessible. One can only grasp the subjective truth, that it the personal truth. If majority of a population shares the same subjective truth, the truth becomes objective. Objective truth can still change over time. Thus it is our choice, whether we will have a more pessimistic or a more optimistic view of life. In light of eternity it does not really matter what we choose, because the absolute truth is inaccessible anyway. It matters to us though. Why throw away your whole life being miserable, when you can be happy most of the time, except those periods of disappointment that cannot be avoided.

Take care,

Helena Smole

2 Responses to “ “The Trap of Being a Pessimist”

  1. kostin mozeg says:

    What if pessimism is an upgrade from depression? If you choose pessimism over being a dumb ass who believes that everything will be a-okay? Beliving that it will all fall into place nowadays is plain stupid.
    Everything is collapsing, poverty is knocking on the doors of most households if it’s not allready in and people are suppose to hope for the better? That one day they will be less poor? Less blue and less in depth and debt?
    Well they do say that hope dies last …

  2. Helena Smole says:

    Thank your for your comment!

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