|Posted by Brittany on March 31, 2012 at 7:45 PM|
What is the difference between an optimist and a pessimist? Research has found that the answer lies in the way people view asetback. Optimistic people tend to view setbacks as “temporary,” “changeable,”and “specific”, while pessimists view problems as “personal,” “permanent,” and“pervasive.” For example, if an optimistic individual is rejected by othersthey will think the event is:
Temporary –This pain will go away quickly
Changeable- I can do something about thissituation
Specific- It is just this one situation!
Conversely, pessimistic individuals think:
Personal- This is all my fault…There is nothingI can do
Permanent- This pain is going to last forever
Pervasive- This will undermine everything…No onewill ever like me.
Interestingly, it should also be noted thatoptimists and pessimists view good events in the exact opposite pattern as theyview negative events. So for positive events, optimistic thinking is, personal,permanent, and pervasive. If an optimistic individual gets a raise at work they think:
Personal- I have been working very hard anddeserve this raise
Permanent- I am always a good worker
Pervasive- I will continue to rise in thiscompany
This is opposed to pessimistic individuals thatview successes as temporary, changeable, and specific.
Temporary- I guess I was just lucky
Changeable- This is too good to betrue…eventually I will mess this up
Specific- I only did well on one project.
It has been found that pessimistic individualsare more likely to suffer from depression and feel helpless than optimists.Research has also found that pessimists typically underachieve in jobs,classrooms, in sports, and their relationships have more problems. Pessimisticpeople also have more problems with their physical health.
So, the question now is, Can optimism be learned? YES! Try this; Next time you face a problem, try to challenge yourselfand view it as temporary, changeable, and specific. It is also equallyimportant to view your successes in an optimistic manner (personal, permanent,and pervasive.)