All About Pessimism

The glass is half-empty and storm-clouds loom overhead (never with a silver lining). Pessimists get a lot of flak for negativity, and their health may take a beating, too. But they make better leaders and are more resistant to false advertising. Having realistic expectations may actually be a recipe for happiness. Try a daily dose of cynicism, but don't let excessive worry take over your life.

Recent Posts on Pessimism

My Daughter Is Going To College And I Am Terrified

How To Handle Anxiety About College

4 Reasons We Should All Give Up Cynicism

Cynicism feels protective. A little cynicism, however, goes a long way. Too much mistrust and cynics find themselves losing more than they gain. If you default to cynicism in your thinking and interactions, make an effort to tap into your more optimistic side.

3 Ways Pessimism About Future Possibilities Fuels Depression

A new study reports that having a pessimistic attitude about "possible futures" isn't simply the result of depression. Pessimism about possible futures may be a leading cause of depression.

A Cynical Attitude Could Cost You

A new study reveals that cynical people earn less money. Three statements can help you determine your level of cynicism.

How Brian Williams Can Earn Back Trust

Can Brian Williams earn back trust? Yes, he can if he follows the 4 H's and 4 R's.

5 Neuroscience Based Ways to Clear Your Mind

This blog post offers five easy ways to clear your mind of unwanted thoughts based on the latest neuroscience.

Feedback Phobia: Why Do So Many Appraisal Processes Fail?

By Adrian Furnham Ph.D. on April 08, 2015 in A Sideways View
Why do so many people hate their work appraisal process which is often based on managers giving their reports feedback to help them improve?

Should We Blame Depression for the Germanwings Crash?

By David B. Feldman Ph.D. on April 06, 2015 in Supersurvivors
In the aftermath of the Germanwings Flight 9525 tragedy, the media quickly pointed to the co-pilot's "severe depression" as a possible cause of the crash. Was this really the cause? Or does this tell us more about our society's continued stigmatization of mental illness than of what really happened?

The Coming Climate Disruptions: Are You Hopeful?

Hope is such a muddled word: “We must have hope!” “There is light at the end of the tunnel!” Why do climate books and speeches have to end on a note of hope? Re-thinking hope in the face of overwhelming climate changes.

Nausea Unto Death?

Responsibility

9 Warning Signs of Burnout

Burnout has been described as the biggest occupational hazard of the twenty-first century. Educating busy professionals and workplaces about its warning signs is a big first step in reducing its impact.

New Discoveries About Depression

By Todd B Kashdan Ph.D. on March 20, 2015 in Curious?
The ultimate guide to understanding depression based on the best, cutting edge science and a description from David Foster Wallace - a genius, one of the best authors of the modern era, who also killed himself to stop the unrelenting pain. What does it really feel like to be in the throes of a major depressive episode?

Don't Believe Everything You Think

Every human mind generates fear much of the time, unless we "retrain" the mind. Without conscious management on our parts, fear can permeate our thoughts -- and poison our relationships with our children. That’s why fear has to be consciously confronted. Here is how.

6 Ways to Infuse Therapy with a Sense of Hope

Bringing a genuine sense of hope and optimism into the therapy process is paramount in our alliance with clients. Fortunately, there are a number of ways in which clinicians can infuse the therapy process with the notion that there is truly a light at the end of the tunnel—and it’s not an oncoming train!

Overcoming Negative Self-Thinking

The task of changing schema is to unlearn the self-defeating old habit and replace it with a new, healthier one.

4 Exercise Tips for People Who Hate to Exercise

By Linda Wasmer Andrews on March 16, 2015 in Minding the Body
Hate exercise? You can learn to enjoy it more with these simple but effective strategies.

Grief, Loneliness, and Losing a Spouse

By Romeo Vitelli Ph.D. on March 16, 2015 in Media Spotlight
Sooner or later, every married couple will face the prospect of their relationship coming to an end, whether due to death or divorce. For those people dealing with the loss of a spouse, overcoming loneliness represents the greatest challenge in moving on with life afterward. A new study looks at how grief and loneliness are linked to depression in older adults.

Hands Up, Don’t Shoot

Psychologists may play an instrumental role in reducing inappropriate use of deadly force by law enforcement personnel.

Happy Pie

By Joachim I Krueger Ph.D. on March 04, 2015 in One Among Many
Some say that 50% of happiness is due to genes, 10% to circumstance, and the rest to what you do. I want to believe that but can’t.

Worthy Proverbs and Silly Ones

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on March 03, 2015 in How To Do Life
We’re affected by proverbs, aphorisms, and slogans…and not always for the good.

Overcome Hopelessness Thinking and Stop Feeling Depressed

By Bill Knaus Ed.D. on February 28, 2015 in Science and Sensibility
Can you think your way out of feeling depressed?

Do Generations Exist?

By Steven Mintz Ph.D. on February 26, 2015 in The Prime of Life
Is it misleading to speak about a self-absorbed “Me Generation” or jaded, cynical GenXers, overeducated and underemployed?

Your Inner Monkey: Learning From Your Way-Way-Back Past

How far back do you look when you want to learn from the past? Your monkey ancestors actually can teach you much about why you do what you do now.

The Mind of the Authoritarian

By Adrian Furnham Ph.D. on February 22, 2015 in A Sideways View
It was around 70 years ago that the famous book entitled THE AUTHORITARIAN PERSONALITY was published. What was the central theory and how is it considered today

Mastering the Art of Relationship Yoga

You probably didn’t log on to this website to read about yoga, but trust me, there’s a connection between the subject at hand, and the theme of this blog, and that, in fact, is the point of this post, and the point of Yoga: Connection.

Health Insurance—Insuring Insecurity

Corruption breeds cynicism—welcome to health insurance

He Who Loves Will Be Conditioned to Show it

Love is not a disposition but it can occur below conscious awareness.

Why So Cynical About Valentine’s Day?

As the Valentine's Day hype machine roars on, so does the Valentine's Day cynicism. Here's why you should resist both.

Are Your Boundaries Making You Miserable?

By Leon F Seltzer Ph.D. on February 12, 2015 in Evolution of the Self
Sure, you need boundaries. And undeniably, you have the right to assert them—whether to safeguard your privacy, self-respect, or basic sense of decency. So it’s crucial to develop the ability and self-confidence to say no, or to tell others to stop doing what they’re doing. But what also needs to be emphasized is that some of your boundaries may be holding you hostage. . .

The Catch-Phrase Technique

By Adrian Furnham Ph.D. on February 11, 2015 in A Sideways View
People often won't tell you what really motivates them. Many can't tell you because they do not have insight into their motives. Over the years, psychologist have tried to invent simple and efficient techniques that assess what people really think. One such is the catch-phrase technique.