Scientist: There Are Benefits To Being A Pessimist

 Pessimists get a bad wrap, but a now one researcher says there’s one type of pessimism, called ‘defensive pessimism’ that is actually beneficial. Fuschia Sirois, a researcher in health psychology at the University of Sheffield writes for The Conversation, explaining that defensive pessimists set low expectations for the outcome of a particular plan or situation, and then envisioning the details of everything that could possibly go wrong to make these worst-case scenarios a reality. It gives the individual the chance to plan out a course of action to try and avoid those potential pitfalls, and ultimately motivates them to do better. Sirois writes, “Pessimism can also be more beneficial than optimism in situations where you are waiting for news about an outcome and there is no opportunity to influence the outcome (such as waiting for the results of a job interview.) When the outcome [is not as great] as optimists had hoped for, they take a bigger hit to their wellbeing and experience disappointment and negative mood than your garden-variety pessimists.” However, the other main form of pessimism, which involves blaming oneself for negative outcomes, has far less positive effects on people. (Daily Mail