Optimists and Pessimists – The big difference is..

Optimists and Pessimists – The big difference is..

By Rajesh Setty on Mon 15 Sep 2008, 8:32 AM – 7 Comments


A pessimist will focus on at least ONE problem in the midst of all the available opportunities.

An optimist will focus on at least ONE opportunity in the middle of all the problems.

Paul Harvey said it right – “I have never seen a monument erected to a pessimist

Have a great day ahead!


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7 Comments so far, Add Yours

Viktor Prochazka  on September 15th, 2008

Hi Raj,

that is undoubtadly true. But I think we need to add that it’s a dynamic circle – an optimist can see the opportunity because a pesimist names the problem (therefor helps solve them) and vice-versa.

Rajesh Setty  on September 15th, 2008

Thank you for the comment there Vikor. You made me think there. I will think about it some more. Very interesting.



Scott Allen  on September 16th, 2008

Yup — that’s me on the bottom there.

When I was little, one Saturday morning I woke my mom up early. “Mom, wake up! It’s a beautiful day!”

She looked outside. “But Scott, it’s pouring rain!”

“Yeah, but it’s a beautiful RAINY day!”

Rajesh Setty  on September 16th, 2008

Scott, thank you so much for sharing this story. One situation. Two perspectives :)



kare anderson  on September 16th, 2008


Per Marty Seligman in Learned Optimism, those who are more pessimistic are more inclined to see a problem as




Rajesh Setty  on September 16th, 2008

Thanks Kare for the comment.

One of my friend used to say that it’s all about “exceptions”. For an optimist, a problem is an exception and for a pessimist, an opportunity is an exception

So many ways to look at this :)



Glennie Scott Allen  on September 18th, 2008

My favorite optimist/pessimist story, to which I constantly refer when describing my son: Two little boys are put alone in separate rooms, each with a huge pile of manure in the center. An hour later the research team returns to view the reactions. Boy 1 is sitting in the corner crying, “Let me out of here!” Boy 2 (my son Scott) is standing in the middle, gleefully tossing the manure every which way. When asked why, his response was, “Any where there’s this much s**t, there’s got to be a pony!”

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