Irrational Positivity

It’s often said that whenever tackling any specific goal, that the mentality that you bring will affect how you go about doing it. If you’re feeling happy, cheerful, and optimistic, it’ll show in the quality of work that you produce. However, when you’re feeling demotivated, sad, and maybe even depressed, your quality of work suffers as well. To this, there have been quite a few neurological studies. After all, wouldn’t you rather be happy while doing work?

It’s being argued that there is a neurological basis for optimism. It might just be a process that’s been hardwired into our brains that’s just essential in survival and evolution. Think about it, optimism is the single bias that we have towards expecting a better outcome, despite insufficient present evidence.

To be able to think so positively on something with that limited available information is one of humans’ extraordinary talents: being able to think in terms of time. Thinking ahead, thinking in retrospect, and everything in between. In fact, you might notice that English, unlike many other languages out there, takes a specific attention to detail about the when. Think about how there are so many rules between the forming of sentences and how tenses affect them. Humans are time-oriented, and it allows us to plan ahead, and at times, endure the extreme hardships of work in anticipation of a future reward.

However, when we talk about happiness and positivity, one of the most important aspects to remember is the peculiarity that whenever we associate anything with the future: thinking on what’s to happen in the next 5 or 10 years, we’re doggedly optimistic about it. Projecting the next 5 years of your life, do you ever think about unemployment, divorce, debt, diseases, or other negative outcomes? Most people don’t.

Even when met with bad days, most people have a certain mindset like “Don’t worry, you’ve been through the worst today, tomorrow will be all better.”

However, think on how these sort of irrationally positive forecasts and self-pondering might cause a butterfly effect on the various aspect of your life, how it will influence the way you act, the way you tackle problems, and the way things are resolved.

With rose-covered glasses, we peer into a future that might just even go way above what can be deemed realistic. With a burning passion in our eyes that tomorrow will be a better day. This optimism bias, although detrimental in how we might perceive and believe everything around us, might just be the certain inspiration we, as humans, need to be able to keep motivated in this life where we rise from nothing and live a few years to eventually return to nothing.

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