Monday, April 25, 2011

Realistic Thought About Positive Thinking for Pessimists

 Just found an article by John Dir, "A Pessimists Guide to Positive Thinking", which fits well with the optimism/pessimism discussion.Whether pessimism is learned or acquired through our genes, the article suggests some ways to moderate the tendency. It also has a very good perspective on why/how positive thinking is not an antidote for the negative thinker in the general sense. (Or for the negative self-talker in the specific sense, which is my viewpoint.)  I printed out a section of the article below. Here's the link to the whole article.

"For a true pessimist, trying to keep charged up by positive thinking techniques can be draining, and even reach a point where the mental exercises called for by the "experts" seem more delusional than beneficial. Trying to imitate or initiate the mental attitudes suggested by positive thinking advocates can be so different from your own natural thought patterns, they become impractical for you to sustain. Many pessimistic people are intelligent, pragmatic realists who may have wonderful imaginations, but reserve their view of life to be tempered by experience and skeptical application of learned results and behaviors.
When a negative pattern of events continues to occur repeatedly over time, it is not practical to overcome the expectations that these experiences instill by simply chanting positive mental denials aimed toward an alternate view of reality. For many people, it is hard to spring out of bed in the morning with a big smile on their face, shout the glory of God and all his many blessings, affirm that today is a wonderful adventure, then go out into the world and get their butts kicked again. Most people do not carry around their self help books for constant reference, nor can they sustain the energy stirred up by an effective speaker during a well executed positive thinking seminar.
Though it is not impossible to transform the core level perception a person has in dealing with their life, sustained results from attempts to retrain instinctive responses is difficult at best. There is always some distinction between what we perceive that we are versus what we want to be. In striving to become the person we want to be, our approach to getting there has to conform to what we believe to be practical behaviors."

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/997975
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