The Positive Pessimist

Can pessimism be positive?

Although the term "positive pessimism" may be considered an oxymoron, practicing positive pessimism is anything but moronic. Positive pessimism in action is the practice of Crisis Anticipation.

Crisis Anticipation is the process of predicting possible obstacles and developing a plan to overcome them before they happen. Sometimes planning for the worst can be the best thing we can do for ourselves. Let's face it, there are times when even the best-laid plans go awry. Remember Murphy's Law: If anything can go wrong, it will. Individuals that are prepared for this make the proper adjustments when crises occur achieve solid success despite crises and continue to move toward their goals in the most positive and productive manner possible.

Crisis Anticipation will help you eliminate or overcome anything that can get in the way of achieving your goals. When things do go wrong, the positive pessimist is prepared and takes action rather than suffering from a reaction. In other words, the positive pessimist strategically positions themselves to be a hero of circumstance vs. a victim.

To practice Crisis Anticipation and become a positive pessimist, take the following steps:

  • Visualize a future circumstance. It could be a client meeting, special event, a any type of business meeting, a health or fitness goal, etc.
  • Brainstorm all of the possible obstacles, objections or negative occurrences that could stand in the way of achieving your goal within that circumstance. Create a list of these obstacles.
  • Once you anticipate all plausible crises, write down a plan or idea to either prepare for or prevent each.
  • What insight did you gain by practicing Crisis Anticipation?
  • How do you feel now that you have created a solution for any obstacle that can come your way?
  • By looking for opportunities to turn negatives into positives, you will become more productive, confident and cool under pressure. You will continue on your path to success no matter how many obstacles come your way. In addition, your preparedness will only reflect an extremely high level of professionalism.