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How Optimistic and Pessimistic Thinking Affects Our Way of Life!

Life | Optimistic | 07th November 2021 | Virtual Wire

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When going through life, determined by our circumstances, we view life as either half empty or half full.

If we become optimists, we expect good things to happen and create opportunities for ourselves. On the other hand of the spectrum, we have people who view life as the cup half empty. From that perspective, people tend to miss opportunities and expect only bad things to happen to them. When we go through bad or good circumstances, it all depends on how we react to the situation. No matter our way of thinking, being optimistic and pessimistic thinkers can determine our health and mindset in the long run. So, what is precisely positive thinking? We can always fall out of positive thinking by avoiding problems, ignoring problems, or telling people there is no problem when there is.


There are many benefits when it comes to thinking positively. Schiefer and Carver developed a measure called the “Life of Orientation Test'' in 1985 to assess differences between people in dispositional optimism and pessimism. So, what does the ‘Life of Orientation measure? This testing is on certain factors. For example, quality of life, self-efficacy, and mental health, this six-question test determines the level of an optimistic thinker you are. The ”LOT” provides accurate results with no matter your background. This way of measurement involves asking people directly whether they expect outcomes in their lives to be good or bad. The measure of success with this theory is in a good deal of research.

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The “LOT” has been a success; in humans who suffer from depression, anxiety, and human trauma. People who have had a higher level of optimism could recuperate from trauma quicker. An article on Optimists Live Longer, by Gina, published on August 26, 2019, shows a study on how optimists live longer. For example, researchers from the Boston University School of medicine has found that individuals with greater optimism have a chance of living longer.


The study, published August 26, 2019, in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, was based on survey data collected from 69,744 women and 1,429 men. Both groups completed survey questions to assess their level of optimism, as well as their overall health and habits, such as diet, smoking, and alcohol use. Optimistic men and women demonstrated an average of 11 to 15 per cent longer life span and had 50 - 70 per cent greater odds of reaching 85 years of age than those who weren’t optimistic. Professor and psychologist Lewina Lee state, “This study has substantial public health relevance because it suggests that optimism is one such a psychosocial asset that has the potential to extend the human lifespan.

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Interestingly, optimism may be modifiable using relatively simple techniques or therapies.”

Senior co-author Laura Kubzansky of Harvard states, “Other research suggests that optimistic behaviour people may be able to regulate emotions and behaviour as well as bounce back from stressors and difficulties more effectively.” Despite the good news of being an optimistic thinker, there are some negatives. Health professors, Robins and John, found that being optimistic could also be associated with having a narcissistic personality. In his studies of Unrealistic Optimists (1989).

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Weinstein has proved the harmful effects of optimistic biases in risk perception related to a host of health hazards. Those who underestimate the risk take less action.” What Weinstein means is that people with an unhealthy optimistic mentality may be putting on an act. When we become optimists, we may tend to forget reality. Pessimistic thinkers tend to focus on the negative, and that can lead to an unhealthy mindset. When we go through good or bad circumstances, it all depends on how we react to the situation. No matter our way of thinking, being optimistic and pessimistic thinkers can determine our health and mindset in the long run.