November 23, 2017

The most important factor that determines a man’s life are his thoughts. The mind is invaluable. Our thoughts determine who we are and what we become. Because our thought pattern has a way of affecting what we attract into our lives, we need to be careful what our minds dwell on. Hence, we are sharing the guide forovercoming pessimism to positive thinking.

Pessimism which is a tendency to see the worst aspect of things or believe that the worst will happen in every situation. This is a mental attitude which makes the pessimist not only believe that the worst would happen but also expects it to happen.

A pessimist usually imagines themselves in worst-case scenarios. You want to wear your beautiful new dress but then you suddenly imagine that it will get ruined at the dinner.

Why am I a negative-thinker?

A person’s past experience conditions his mind to be either pessimistic or optimistic. And individuals have a natural or learned disposition to be one or the other.

However, it is important to note that, though you cannot control what happens in the external world, you are responsible for yourself and what happens to you. You can program your mind, control your thoughts and decide to be a positive thinker or a negative one.

Fears and insecurities can make you only see the negative side of things and fill your mind with negative thoughts.

RELATED POST: How to Overcome Personal Insecurities: The Path to Self-Confidence

Another cause of negative thinking is a poor response to failure. Some people start off with positive thinking but when they encounter challenges and obstacles, they resort to negative thinking.  It becomes the reason for their struggles or lack. David Schwartz said, “how you think when you lose determines how long it will be before you win”.


How do pessimism or my negative thoughts influence my life?

An individual’s perspective determines how he handles his or her experiences. According to Carver and Schier (1999), “Optimists experience less distress than pessimistic when dealing with difficulties in their lives” (p. 190). As such, pessimists tend to be more depressed and harbor more doubts than those who think more optimistically.

Generally, negative thinking would influence;

  1.  Your attitude

  2.  Your goals, performance and what you can achieve.

  3.  Your physical health.

How do I stop negative thinking or pessimism?

Firstly, you have to understand that it’s a matter of choice. It cannot be forced. This means you cannot stop negative thinking unless you (really) want to.

Other things to keep in mind are:

1.  It is not automatic. Thus, you actively work on it consistently.

2.  It is difficult. Like old habits, negative thinking is hard to stop.

3.  It is worth it. Knowing the benefits of positive thinking and the effects of negative thinking should be a drive to switch from negative thinking.

Having this in mind, the steps to take in overcoming pessimism include:

  1.  Evaluate your current perspective, identifying the thoughts that are negative.

2.  Make a commitment to change and act on it.

The difference between a wise man and a foolish man is not knowledge. It is the application of knowledge. You already have the knowledge, now apply it.

3.  Expose yourself to good thoughts in what you listen to and watch.

You can’t just stop negative thoughts, they need to be replaced with something else.

4.  Expose yourself to positive-thinkers.

Let their attitudes and dispositions rub off on you. Take time to study these people; how they are different from you and put in every effort you can to learn from them.

5.  Avoid or reduce contact with negative-thinkers.

6.  Be consistent.

Programming your mind to change the way you think is only effective with consistency.

To sum up;

Wipe negative thoughts from your mind. No more thinking everything is going to turn out bad. Wake up each day with a positive attitude towards life.
When you replace your old pessimistic negative expectations with positive ones, temper it with realism. So, when your brain expects a positive outcome, work in that line.

And even if it seems to have an unfavorable outcome, see the silver lining in the clouds.  With the right thoughts coupled with actions, man can achieve absolutely anything he puts his mind to.

Do you have tips that have helped you in overcoming pessimism? Share your thoughts below.

Love, Sekinat Sanni.

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  • Reply JP November 23, 2017 at 8:36 pm

    Well said.

  • Reply Gibbs November 26, 2017 at 10:58 am

    Great article, good post

  • Reply Rawlings November 29, 2017 at 5:30 pm

    Great post. You broke it down to the simplest bit. Actions to overcome pessimism and stay alive is just to change your mind. When you change your mind, everything changes.

  • Reply Audrey November 30, 2017 at 1:49 pm

    Wonderful thoughts. A conscious and steady effort combined with prayer can certainly break any bad habit!

  • Reply Michelle November 30, 2017 at 3:32 pm

    Wise words and great advice…negativity can prevent us being the best we can!!

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