We all live in an era of self-help books and motivational speakers, most of which consist of people promoting the benefits of having a positive mentality.
And in the process, we often fail to acknowledge how in some ways being a pessimist may also be beneficial. Pessimistic views may not prove to be as helpful as positivity, but it has been known to aid in astounding successes in case of both materialistic needs and mental health.
Starting off, pessimism can be broadly divided into two groups namely - the defensive, and the self-blaming kinds. Arguably, the latter is presumed to show less advantageous results. However, both the groups have its fair share of pros and cons. It is up to you to figure out which method works best for you.
The defensive kind is characterised by its predictive nature. For example, you have a very crucial exam the next day and you go into the exam hall with next to zero expectations regardless of your level of preparation. Subsequently, on the day of the result, the deliberate absence of any expectation means that any result you receive is above par. Thus, you're left with no room for disappointment. This technique has often been helpful in controlling anxiety in times of intense stress or workload.
The second kind, be it more centric towards yours truly, consists of you playing the blame game on yourself. For instance, you look around at everything that's going wrong in your life and accuse yourself of being responsible for all of it. Now, as unhealthy as this may sound, it actually has a twisted beneficial impact. You often feel this surprising level of control over your own life which helps you better navigate your way through the different hurdles life throws in your way. You become the driver of your own conscience, which in turn accelerates your chances of you getting ahead in life.
Delving into the other benefits of pessimism, you find the pleasantries in the element of surprise. Whenever you see people doing good in the world, contradicting your negative view on life, you attain this enhanced appreciation for everything. Pessimists are also more cautious than the rest and they often use it to their advantage. For instance, they use their negative expectations to take preventive actions in order to avoid said negative expectations. Moreover, it helps you become a person of your own, not dependent on anyone or anything, because God knows, trusting others don't come easy to you.
In addition to the aforementioned points, pessimists are known to have better lasting relationships mostly due to their cautious nature. They often believe something might go wrong or that nothing lasts forever so tend to be appreciative of every happy moment they get to cherish. Lastly, negative thinking results in more time invested in making future plans and thus are thought to live longer than optimists.
As a whole, there are about a gazillion ways people find comfort in dealing with their ongoing battles day in day out, be it with an optimistic mind or a negative point of view. Just remember to continue trying new things until you find the right coping mechanism for yourself but until then, Godspeed.
Veronica Gomes is a socially awkward sophomore. Feel free to trigger awkward encounters by reaching out to her at firstname.lastname@example.org