Why we are prone to optimism and hope over realism and the skepticism of experience


Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2017/08/30/why-we-are-prone-to-optimism-a.html


Wow, that bummed me out.


Because I would have major liver damage if I gave in to realism and skepticism.


I’ve had this on my shelf for a while and optimistically hope to read it eventually.

Lengthy excerpt at NPR


I mean, I tried being doubting my own abilities, memory and competence, and not trusting institutions or providence. Did that increasingly until about 5 years ago when I finally sought counseling.

Training myself to be optimistic again was not really easy. And I may overestimate how good things will be from time to time. But it’s a darn sight easier to live with than the sleepless, anxious misery that relentless pessimism was.


This is not a problem I have.


I’m not a pessimist; I’m a well-informed optimist.


When did the opposite of optimism become skepticism?


As soon as we started paying attention?


I’m a realist who refuses to give up hope; no matter how bad or futile things may seem, because defeatism solves no problems.


I know a guy who was married and divorced twice - to the same woman.
EDIT: I didn’t know his wife, who was married and divorced twice - to the same guy.


If life seems jolly rotten
There’s something you’ve forgotten
And that’s to laugh and smile and dance and sing.
When you’re feeling in the dumps
Don’t be silly chumps
Just purse your lips and whistle - that’s the thing.


I guess this is probably related to the fact that “Plucky underdog who succeeds against all odds,” are a recurring theme in movies.


So, will we hardwire believing in silicon heaven into our AIs and robots?

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